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EghtesadOnline: The Ministry of Health and Medical Education’s request to ban the export of cotton face masks was agreed upon by the Market Regulation Headquarters on Monday.

“The committee responsible for issuing export taxes affiliated with the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran will soon take necessary measures in this respect,” Mohammad Reza Kalami, the spokesman of the headquarters, was quoted as saying by IRNA.

Feysal Mardasi, an advisor to the Iranian Association for Hygienic Cellulose Industry, said on Monday that at present and due to an outbreak of coronavirus in China, Chinese traders are buying face masks from Iran and have pre-purchased almost all of what is produced in the country, according to Financial Tribune.

“Given the current circumstances and the increase in domestic demand for face masks, exports of the product have to be banned so the local market remains balanced,” the official was quoted as saying by ILNA.

The coronavirus has spread from China to around 20 countries and has sickened tens of hundreds of people globally. Hundreds of people have died from the virus.

An acute shortage of face masks in Asia caused by the fear of the spreading coronavirus has found its way West, with online retailers, manufacturers and pharmacies in the US and UK selling out of the products, according to Financial Times.

Manufacturers are increasing production to meet surging demand, as individuals and companies scramble to stock up on protective gear.


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