A member of Iran’s Chamber of Commerce says Iran’s trade with Iraq has declined between 20 to 30 percent this year comparing to the same period last year, noting condition in the borders is good and there is no certain problem there.
Speaking to ILNA, Ali Shariati pointed to the current condition of industry, mine and trade ministry which has no minister, adding that this ministry is one of the most problematic ministries of the country because until yesterday, it was the oil ministry which was the center of the national budget but today ministry of industry, mine, and trade plays a key role in the national budget but the question is why such a crucial ministry is run without a minister.
He added that at this moment, the ministry of industry, mine, and trade is more strategic than oil ministry because it is one of the driving forces which can help the national economy for earning the forex but it still has no minister and one can say the ministry is in an unmotivated mode.
Shariati also pointed to the condition of exports in the country, saying that sanction is nothing new because it has existed since the past and this year one can see no difference in it comparing to the past, reiterating that coronavirus pandemic is currently the most serious problem for the exports sector of Iran which has turned into a common problem worldwide.
He admitted that on the whole, Iran’s exports have not changed significantly but it has also declined a little and this is something that the whole world is facing. He stated that if Iran wants to improve the condition of its exports, it needs planning, concentration, and coordination with the Central Bank which can solve problems of exporters, something which is not seen so for because industry, mine and trade ministry, which is itself in charge of imports and exports, is grappling with its vague future.
He reiterated such uncertainty has led to a drop in the trade between Iran and Iraq and currently their bilateral trade has decreased by 20 to 30 percent this year.
Meanwhile, the spokesman of Iranian Oil, Gas and Petrochemical Products Exporters’ Union (OPEX) told ILNA, “Iran annually exports nearly 3 billion Euros of gas and 700 to 800 million dollars of electricity to Iraq.”
Seyed Hamid Hosseini said that Iran’s electricity and gas are exported to Iraq every day, and the country’s total debt to Tehran is unknown.
Referring to Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi appointed Mustafa Ghaleb as central bank governor; the member of the Chamber of Commerce and Spokesman of the Exporters’ Union also noted that the former Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq did not cooperate seriously in returning the blocked Iranian money.