News ID: 314082
Published: 0247 GMT June 20, 2021

Iran-Malaysia annual trade hits $370m: Official

Iran-Malaysia annual trade hits $370m: Official

Bilateral trade between Malaysia and Iran amounted to $370 million in 2020, said the first secretary and head of the chancery of the Malaysian Embassy in Tehran on Sunday.

Speaking at a press conference which was attended by Farhad Jafari, the marketing manager of the Ministry of Tourism of Malaysia (Tourism Malaysia) in Tehran, Mohd Nizam bin Halimi noted that Malaysia’s imports from Iran were seafood, agriculture products, oil-based products and processed foods.

“The country’s major exports to Iran included palm oil and palm-based agricultural products, natural rubber, machinery and equipment parts as well as chemical products,” he said.

The official went on to say that his country considers Iran an important partner in the West Asia region and greater efforts are needed to be undertaken to identify potential cooperation in trade and investment.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created incredible challenges for governments and economies around the world. Despite the difficult time we are experiencing right now, Malaysia will continue to work with Iran to strengthen our bilateral trade and investment as well as to mitigate the economic consequences of COVID-19,” the official said.

Malaysia is exploring ways forward in fostering more strategic partnership in various fields such as tourism, health, education and halal industries, he said, adding that as a trading nation, Malaysia is also keen on increasing the export of palm oil and palm products to all countries, including Iran.

“Malaysia’s borders are currently closed for international tourists, and based on the Malaysian government’s last announcement, a four-phase COVID-19 recovery plan will be implemented; we expect the full reopening of the economy by the end of the year.”

After that, Malaysia will consider opening its borders to other countries, and if borders open in 2021, Tourism Malaysia will definitely have some plan to do promotion and a familiarization trip for the Iranian Media and travel agencies, he continued.

In the past, many groups from the media and travel agents were hosted in Malaysia by Tourism Malaysia, and it will happen again, the official said.

International tourist arrivals to Malaysia plunged by 83.4 percent in 2020 to record a total of 4.3 million arrivals as compared to 26.1 million in 2019, due to widespread travel restrictions amid the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, bin Halimi noted.

The collapse of international travel to Malaysia represents an estimated loss of RM73.5 billion or 85.3 percent in tourism revenues, from RM86.19 billion in 2019 to RM12.69 billion in 2020, he said.

“Tourism Malaysia has conducted consistent studies and research to better formulate an equipped tourism plan for the Middle East market. Its research has shown that post-pandemic travel trends will include tourists traveling in smaller groups to less crowded areas with preferences for personalized tours,” the Malaysian official noted.

Post-lockdown, Malaysia is banking on its majestic nature, beautiful islands and beaches as well as its mountains and tropical rain forests to attract tourists from the region, he continued.

Tourism Malaysia has also launched the campaign #WeMissYou, especially for the Middle East region, to emphasize the memories it has for travelers wandering around the magnificent attractions that Malaysia offers, the official said.

“In December 2020, the Malaysian prime minister launched the National Tourism Policy 2020-30, that would be focused on strengthening competitiveness, encouraging sustainable and inclusive tourism, as well as planning for future disasters,” he noted.

Malaysia will also exhibit daily cultural shows and craft demonstrations at Malaysia Pavilion’s amphitheater during Expo 2020 Dubai, where visitors will get a captivating glimpse of how Malaysia is ‘Truly Asia,’ with its diverse cultures and people of multi-ethnicities living in harmony, contributing to the nation’s progress, the Malaysian official added.

Currently, Malaysia is already open for investors and business travelers, he said, adding that approved short-term business travelers are exempted from the mandatory quarantine.

Detailed information on the procedures can be found at, the official noted.

“Moreover, we will do joint promotion with airlines, such as joint familiarization trip to Malaysia for the media and travel agencies, to visit Malaysia and update the latest tourism attractions and opportunities in Malaysia,” bin Halimi noted.

Considering the current state of international travel, we are looking at the year 2025 for travel to return to normal, and have earmarked the Middle East as one of our important markets, he concluded.


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