Iran - Lanka total trade increases by 4.5% | Daily News

Iran - Lanka total trade increases by 4.5%

Ambassador of Iran In Sri Lanka Zaerl Amirani and Minister Bathiudeen in Colombo
Ambassador of Iran In Sri Lanka Zaerl Amirani and Minister Bathiudeen in Colombo

Iran has now called for the pivotal Joint Economic Commission talks to be held in Tehran-as early as this August.

“As per our own assessment, the May 2018 State visit by Lankan delegation to Iran was very good -and productive,” said Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran In Sri Lanka Mohammad Zaerl Amirani addressing Industry and Commerce Minister Rishad Bathiudeen during his courtesy call on Minister Bathiudeen.

“Outcomes of the State visit led by President Maithripala Sirisena were good. Among the major outcomes were the many Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) signed between both countries in Tehran. These pack great benefits for Sri Lanka.” “During this visit President Hassan Rouhani also stressed the need to continue with the bilateral Joint Commission for Economic Co-operation (JCEC) meeting series; in this light as well as to start on the new MoUs,” said Ambassador Amirani.

According to the Department of Commerce, total bilateral trade between the two countries last year was at $ 188 million –an increase of 4.5% over 2016’s total of $180 million.

The balance of trade was in favour of Sri Lanka as 94% of total trade ($177 million) were exports from Sri Lanka to Iran. Among the leading exports from Sri Lanka to Iran in 2017 were Ceylon Tea (90%), Desiccated Coconut (3%), other vegetable mixtures (2%) and Defatted coconuts (1%).

Total imports were only $ 11 million - the leading four imports were fish, wires and cables, grapes and plastic items.

Till 2013 the imports were at a much higher rate (2011-$1.4 billion, 2012-$660 million) due to incoming petroleum from Iran but since 2013 the import of Petroleum were no more causing a rapid fall in imports from Iran.

“The series of JCEC has been helpful in advancing our relations in many ways.

Since bulk of our exports is a single product (tea-90% of exports in 2017) it is time to diversify our exports basket to Iran. August JCEC can help us in these.” Minister Bathiudeen said.



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