EghtesadOnline: Iran traded 10.81 million tons of non-oil commodities worth $6.33 billion with the VISTA group of countries in the last fiscal year (ended March 20, 2019) to register a 42.85% and 27.33% decline in tonnage and value respectively compared with the year before.
VISTA is an acronym referring to the emerging markets of Vietnam, Indonesia, South Africa, Turkey and Argentina. The concept was first proposed in 2006 by BRICs Economic Research Institute of Japan.
Latest data released by the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration show Iran’s exports totaled 9.1 million tons worth $3.37 billion during the last fiscal year, indicating a 45.05% and 32.68% decrease in tonnage and value respectively year-on-year.
Imports stood at 1.71 million tons worth $2.95 billion, down 27.4% and 20.08% in tonnage and value respectively YOY, according to Financial Tribune.
As a result, Iran recorded a non-oil trade surplus of $420.95 million with VISTA nations.
Main Commodities, Trading Partners
Iran mainly imported cooking bananas, tobacco, soybean oil, fibers, sunflower oil, cotton and wood pulp from VISTA countries.
In exchange, major commodities exported by Iran to VISTA nations included liquefied natural gas, non-alloy semi-finished iron/steel products, non-alloy iron and steel ingots and non-alloy zinc.
In terms of total trade value, Turkey topped the list among VISTA countries with Iran trade standing at 8.15 million tons worth $4.98 billion, indicating a 49.54% and 30.61% decrease in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Exports to Turkey amounted to 6.76 million tons worth $2.36 billion to register a 52.72% and 40.22% decline in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Turkey was Iran’s top export destination among the countries under review and sixth in the world.
In return, Turkey exported 1.39 million tons of commodities worth $2.61 billion to Iran, down by 24.96% and 18.79% in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Turkey was the top exporter of goods to Iran among VISTA states and the third in the world after China and the UAE.
Major Iranian commodities exported to Turkey were liquefied natural gas, non-alloy zinc, aluminum, urea and bitumen.
In exchange, Turkey mainly exported cooking bananas, tobacco and fibers to Iran.
Indonesia was Iran’s second biggest trading partner among VISTA countries during the period, as two-way commercial exchanges stood at 2.24 million tons worth $917.86 million to register a 3.89% decline in tonnage and 0.52% increase in value YOY.
Iran exported 2.1 million tons of goods worth $786.86 million to Indonesia, up by 5.78% and 21.27% in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Indonesia was Iran’s second export destination among VISTA nations and ninth in the world during the 12-month period.
Iran’s exports to Indonesia included non-alloy semi-finished iron/steel products, non-alloy iron/steel ingots, liquefied propane and bitumen.
It imported 138,192 tons of commodities worth $131 million from Indonesia, down by 59.88% and 50.43% in tonnage and value respectively YOY, which mainly constituted paperboard paper, aluminum oxide, medium-density fibers, coconut and industrial alcohol.
Indonesia was the second exporter of goods to Iran among the states and 29th in the world.
Vietnam was Iran’s third major trading partner among VISTA countries.
Trade between Iran and Vietnam amounted to 133,763 tons worth $231.78 million, indicating a 42.22% and 48.18% decline in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Iran’s exports reached 115,259 tons worth $186.04 million, down 43.06% and 49.39% in tonnage and value respectively YOY, while Vietnam’s exports to Iran were at 18,503 tons worth $45.74 million, down by 36.35% and 42.6% in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Vietnam was Iran’s third export destination and the fourth exporter of goods to Iran among VISTA states. The country was Iran’s 24th export destination and 45th exporter to Iran in the world.
Saffron, shrimp, figs, lead, bitumen and frozen chicken were Iran’s main goods exported to Vietnam, while Vietnam mainly exported coffee, pepper, aquatic feed and cellphones to Iran.
Argentina was the third exporter of goods to Iran, after Turkey and Indonesia, among VISTA nations and 30th in the world, as Iran imported 161,405 tons worth $128.03 million during the 12-month period from Argentina to register a 26.86% and 28.02% increase in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Iran imported soybean oil, sunflower oil, oilcake, pod vegetables, chemicals and vegetable seeds from Argentina.
Highest Growths, Declines in Trade
Trade with Argentina ($128.17 million) and Indonesia ($917.86 million) saw growths of 26.69% and 0.52% YOY, while trade with Vietnam ($231.78 million), Turkey ($4.98 billion) and South Africa ($71.56 million) saw the lowest declines of 48.18%, 30.61% and 0.24% respectively.
Iran’s exports to Indonesia ($786.86 million) registered a growth of 21.27% YOY, while exports to Argentina ($139,170), Vietnam ($186.04 million) and Turkey ($2.36 billion) witnessed the lowest declines of 88.01%, 49.39% and 40.22% respectively.
Imports from Argentina ($128.03 million) and South Africa ($35.64 million) witnessed the highest rises of 28.02% and 4.07% respectively, while imports from Indonesia ($131 million), Vietnam ($45.74 million) and Turkey ($2.61 billion) witnessed highest declines of 50.43%, 42.6% and 18.79% respectively YOY.