EghtesadOnline: Iran and Turkey traded $891.13 million worth of goods in the first two months of 2022 to register a 39.59% year-on-year rise, latest data by the Turkish Statistical Institute show.
Iranian exports stood at $517.97 million in the two months under review, up 70.36% year-on-year, while imports grew by 11.6% to $373.16 million.
Trade between the two sides stood at $458.55 million in February, up 29.26% YOY.
Turkish exports hit $204.82 million, up 7.59% YOY, while Iran exported $253.73 million, registering a 54.35% growth year-on-year.
Iran and Turkey traded $4.77 billion worth of goods in 2021 to register a 69.12% rise compared with the preceding year. Iranian exports stood at $2.52 billion, up 145.18% year-on-year, while imports grew by 25.5% to $2.25 billion.
Monthly trade between Iran and Turkey fell below $300 million in September 2020, mostly due to a decline in Iran's exports to the neighboring country, following Covid-19 restrictions. However, trade started to improve in December, raising hopes for recovery from the impact of the pandemic.
Bilateral trade stood at $3.43 billion in 2020, registering a decline of 45.82% compared with 2019. Iran exported $1.192 billion worth of goods to Turkey in 2020 to register a 66.9% year-on-year decline while imports from Turkey stood at $2.245 billion, down 17.97% YOY.
Turkey’s aggregate value of exports amounted to $169.482 billion, down 6.3% while imports hit $219.397 billion in 2020, up 4.3%, compared with 2019.
Bazargan in Maku County is the most important Iranian land border for importing and exporting from and to Turkey. The city borders both Iraq and Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic. Its customs office, established in the fiscal 1926-27, is the only international border between Iran and Turkey that works round the clock.
Agreement Signed at ECO Summit
Turkey and Iran signed an agreement to improve relations in a meeting held at the 15th Economic Cooperation Organization Summit held in Turkmenistan's capital Ashgabat in late November.
Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said on Twitter that Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed to convene a high commission meeting during Erdogan's next visit to Iran's capital Tehran, Daily Sabah reported.
Describing relations between the two countries as "historic", Amir-Abdollahian said it was agreed to talk about the comprehensive improvement of relations and the removal of obstacles.
Raisi and Erdogan held a closed-door meeting as part of the summit.
Preferential Trade Agreement
Finalizing ongoing talks with Iran for the expansion of the bilateral Preferential Trade Agreement is a priority for Turkey, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Fatih Donmez said.
“The trade deal came into effect on Jan. 1, 2015, and negotiations have been ongoing to expand the pact by increasing the number of products traded between Turkey and Iran,” Donmez told the virtual 28th Turkey-Iran Economic Commission convened earlier this year.
Customs cooperation was another topic up for discussion at the meeting. Both sides agreed to an electronic data interchange protocol to carry out a simplified customs frontier project and the mutual recognition of an Authorized Economic Operator project.
These projects will have a positive impact on foreign trade by enabling easier and faster trade while eliminating bureaucratic procedures based on mutual trust, he added.
Both sides agreed to assign technical teams in the near future to put the plans into action.
“The two sides also agreed on increasing fairs and exchange of trade delegations between Turkey and Iran to show our [Turkey’s] concrete support and the great importance attached to cooperation between private sector representatives,” he said.
“Support for the activities of the Turkey-Iran Business Council and other private sector establishments, notably small- and medium-sized enterprises, would also continue, particularly after the pandemic.”
Consequently, both sides agreed to commit to talks on developing an “action plan” between the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Organization of Turkey and its Iranian equivalent, Iran Small Industries and Industrial Parks Organization.
Donmez concluded that the commission also addressed other areas of cooperation, including health, energy, transportation, education, environment, agriculture and forestry.