Nov 27, 2021, 10:07 AM
Journalist ID: 1843
News Code: 84556396
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Iran keen on expanding economic ties in ECO market

Tehran, IRNA - The upcoming 15 ECO Summit in Turkmenistan seems to be a good opportunity for Tehran to increase economic and trade cooperation with the nine member states of the bloc.

"Iran" newspaper published a memo on Saturday, emphasizing that President Ebrahim Raisi is going to take part in the summit to discuss ways to develop interactions with the ECO members.
The Iranian president met with Khusrav NOZIRI, 13th Secretary General of the ECO, on November 23, underlining the need for upgrading economic cooperation among member states of the organization.
President Raisi stated that Tehran attaches importance to regional cooperation in the framework of the Economic Cooperation Organization, calling for more usage of existing capacities of member states.
The Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) is set to hold its 15th summit in Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan on November 28.
ECO, founded by Turkey, Iran and Pakistan in 1985 as a follow-up of the Regional Cooperation for Development, was also joined by Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in 1992. 
Some economic experts opine that the previous Iranian administration could not utilize bilateral and multilateral accords to nullify the negative impacts of anti-Iran sanctions; so, the level of economic and trade exchanges between the Islamic Republic and other ECO member states is still unsatisfactory. 
Majid Salari, an economic operator, told "Iran" newspaper that the Rouhani administration neglected bilateral and multilateral contracts and all its efforts were incomplete. 
However, the 13th administration is determined to listen to the advice of economic experts in order to expand ties with other ECO members.
Experts working with the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran (TPOI) said that a trade agreement was inked in 2016, but it has not become operational yet, and that five countries confirmed text and annexes of the agreement but Tajikistan did not accept annexes.
According to the TPOI, Iran's exports of commodities to other ECO member states stood at more than 290 billion dollars in 2020, while the amount estimated 342 billion dollars and 394 billion dollars in 2019 and 2018 respectively. Moreover, Iranian imports from the ECO members stood at 372 billion dollars in 2020 compared to 388 billion dollars and 404 billion dollars in 2019 and 2018.
The Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) announced that the volume of trades between Iran and other nine ECO members stood at 20.3 million tons worth 9.233 billion dollars in the first seven months of this Iranian calendar year (started March 21, 2021).

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