0316 GMT May 17, 2021
The Vienna-based organization specializes in economic and industrial development in the developing countries or nations with a transitional economy.
Maryam Javan-Shahraki said UNIDO seeks to create employment possibilities, through its industrial projects, for different groups in Iran, including “women, the youth and people with disabilities.”
The following is what she had to say to Iran Daily regarding the agency’s projects in Iran:
Iran Daily: Would you please tell us about the UNIDO’s history in Iran and its objectives?
Javan-Shahraki: the UNIDO started collaboration with Iran in the 60’s and established an office in Tehran in 1990.
The agency signed a cooperation deal with Iran in 2016, which prioritizes advising on industrial policies, environmental protection, development of the value chain of local products, facilitating the market access, as well as the energy efficiency.
Q: How does UNIDO value creating job opportunities in its projects in Iran?
A: It’s always been a top priority for the agency. We are working with the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labor, and Social Welfare on employment for different groups, especially women, the youth, and disabled people in five provinces. The project has been launched in the fields of handicrafts, information technology (IT), beekeeping, and garment industry.
We started a Japan-financed project with Iran Tourism Development Corporation last year, which focuses on tourism, handicrafts and needlework art in Sistan and Baluchestan, supporting local jobs for women in the province.
Q: Please elaborate on the UNIDO-Japan project in Sistan and Baluchestan.
A: The contract was signed with Japan last year and it aims at connecting the Iranian industries to the global market, as well as improving the welfare system in Sistan and Baluchestan.
The project, under the name “Improving the industrial and sustainable development of the value chain of yellowfin tuna”, has been carrying out in the Chabahar Port.
The fish has a high potential export value as the majority of the fishermen in the port trawl yellowfin for living.
Iran’s yellowfin fish is one of the highest-quality of its kind in the world and is also three times bigger in size than the Japanese breed. The Iranian government also prioritizes the value chain of tuna fish in support for the fisheries in the region.
The project addresses different issues such as the ecological circumstances of the area, fishing methods, and the required fishing facilities and equipment.
Q: Why is Japan interested in the project?
A: Japan is one of the major exporters and consumers of fish and other aquatic animals in the world. Besides, Japan considers Chabahar as an important spot for investment, as the country always seeks to support the vulnerable strata in the developing countries.
Japan has always been in close collaboration with UNIDO, which is why it accepted to work with the UN organization on the project after rounds of negotiation in Iran and Japan.
Q: What are other UNIDO projects in Iran?
A: We’re undertaking an energy efficiency project in the country with the help of Global Environment Fund (GEF). The project will continue for five years and will help save the energy produced by 500,000 oil barrels per year. The goal will be achieved through offering education to different industries such as the cement, petrochemical, refinery, and oil and gas productions.
Another program will be aimed at reducing the polluting gases and substances in line with to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.
A project in date value chain industries has also been launched in Chabahar Port.