Iranian First Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri hailed the country's eye-catching increase in non-oil exports in the first four months of the current Iranian year (March 21, 2014-June 22, 2014) as compared with last year's corresponding period.
"Iran exported non-oil commodities worth $16 billion in the first four months of the current year showing a 20-percent rise as compared with the last year's corresponding period," Jahangiri said, addressing the opening ceremony of the 23rd Hand-Woven Carpet Exhibition on Saturday.
He pointed to the regional countries as one of Iran's biggest target markets, and said, "The Asian, African and Latin American countries are appropriate markets where we can be present," the Iranian first vice-president said.
Jahangiri said that Iran should pay attention to both its traditional export goods such as carpet, pistachio and saffron as well as products of its modern and mineral industries for export to other countries.
Last month, Iranian Minister of Industry, Mine and Trade Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh announced that the country plans to further increase its non-oil exports.
Iran plans to augment exports of its non-oil commodities to $50bln by the end of the current Iranian year (ending March 20), Nematzadeh said, addressing a ceremony for inauguration of an investment project in Tehran.
Iran exported approximately $11.859bln of non-oil commodities in the second 3 months of 2014, the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) said earlier this month.
According to the IRICA data, Iran’s non-oil exports reached $11.859bln in the aforesaid three months, compared with $9.838bln in the same period last year, showing nearly 20.5 percent increase.
The country’s year-on-year imports also had a 35.6 percent growth in the past quarter, reaching $12.386bln from $9.133bln the same period last year.
Iran’s major exported items during the past quarter comprised liquefied propane, methanol and bitumen and the main export destinations, in descending order, were China, Iraq, the UAE, Afghanistan and Turkey.
The country’s major imports in the past three months included wheat, vehicles with Internal combustion engines, rice and soy oil cake, which mainly came from the UAE, China, India, Turkey and South Korea.