Iran, Armenia to deepen trade ties via joint ventures

Tehran, IRNA – Iran’s Minister of Industry, Mine and Trade Reza Fatemi-Amin said his visit to Armenia is aimed at expanding bilateral trade ties via joint investments.

“This visit is focused on deepening ties between Iran and Armenia via joint ventures, said Reza Fatemi-Amin upon arrival in the Armenian capital of Yerevan on Thursday.

The Iranian minister is heading a high-ranking delegation including trade officials and CEOs of private companies. This is the first visit to Armenia by high-ranking Iranian officials since President Ebrahim Raisi took office back in August 2021.

Expanding trade diplomacy with regional states tops the agenda of the new Iranian administration. Fatemi-Amin has already made several trips to the Persian Gulf states of UAE, Qatar and Oman to boost bilateral trade relations.

Implementing trade agreements, facilitating trade between Iranian and Armenian private sectors, cooperation in free zones, commodity trade, transportation and customs are among the economic issues to be discussed in the meetings between Iranian and Armenian officials.

Important trade partner

The Iranian minister also described Armenia as an important trade partner whose economy complements that of Iran’s.

“Armenia as a member state of the Eurasian Economic Union and a country neighboring Iran is of great significance. The economies of Iran and Armenia are complementary. We can export technologies in many industrial sectors to Armenia and import our required industrial know-how from Armenia,” said the Iranian official.

The Republic of Armenia is a landlocked country located in northwestern Iran. The two countries share a 44 km border.

Trade relations between Iran and Armenia have dramatically expanded after Iran signed a Free Trade Agreement with the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) in October 2019.

Under the three-year preferential trade deal, EAEU and Tehran obliged to accept the conditions for achieving a full free trade plan for tariff-free essential commodities.

Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Russia are the member states of EAEU.

Platform for export

“Iranian companies including those manufacturing home appliances as well as food industries can invest in Armenia to produce and export their products to other countries. We will also invite some Armenian companies to invest in Iran during the meeting with high-ranking Armenian officials…” Fatemi-Amin noted.

Given its relatively low trade tariffs (4%) with North American countries like Canada, Armenia can serve as a platform facilitating the export of Iranian products to such markets.

The value of Iran-Armenia trade volume stood at $304 million during the last Persian calendar year (March 21, 2020- March 20, 2021), with both sides planning to beef up bilateral trade.

During his two-day visit, Iranian Industry, Mine and Trade Minister Reza Fatemi-Amin is to meet top officials among them the Armenian minister of economy, the deputy prime minister as well as head of Armenia’s central bank.