Iran’s positive foreign trade performance

Iran’s positive foreign trade performance



By Pedram Soltani

A country's trade policies are a collection of tools and decisions aimed at boosting or limiting trade. These policies indicate the government's line on economic relations.

We can even perceive the government's line on foreign policies by studying its use of trade tools such as tariffs, customs duties, export and import quotas, taxes and tolls, bilateral and multilateral contracts and non-tariff obstacles.      

Although there are differences between economic policies and relations, a look at this line can help understand the government's approach toward international relations.

Since President Hassan Rouhani took office in 2013, the government has taken measures to reform its customs regulations in line with its economic policies. These measures are aimed at reducing customs bureaucracy for accelerating imports and exports. Such policies are considered positive with regard to the needs of the economy.

Last year, businessmen were encouraged to repatriate their hard currency earnings and this move has had a good impact on boosting exports. The government's decision to reduce tariff procedures from 14 to seven in the next four years will be effective in promoting exports and imports.

In addition, the government activated many agreements last year and many contracts were signed or renewed. All of these show that the government's foreign trade policies are contractionary.

The pursuit of détente in ties with other states also changed our economic policies. Sending economic delegations abroad, hosting trade teams from other states and enhancing commerce chambers across the country indicate that the government’s economic record was more positive than in the pervious years.

An interim nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers, which led to sanctions relief and increased diplomatic interactions, also had positive effects on Iran's economic relations and trade balance. 

The government has also targeted the export of high value-added goods such as techno-engineering services instead of consumer goods.

Iran's trade partners have high capacity that should be used. The sole problem of the economy is the production sector's weakness caused by mismanagement in the past eight years.

By settling problems facing the production sector, the country will able to increase the use of its partners' capacities. Therefore, settlement of domestic problems and expansion of international relations are key to boosting economy.


*Pedram Soltani is a member of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture.

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