IRICA chief Mehdi Mir-Ashrafi said that petrochemicals accounted for 43% of the value and nearly a half of the weight of Iran’s exports in the eight months to November 21, Press TV reported.
Largest exports destination over the period was China with $9.1 billion worth of purchases, followed by Iraq at $6.1 billion and Turkey at $3.8 billion, said Mir-Asharfi, adding that exports to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Afghanistan had amounted to $2.9 billion and $1.27 billion, respectively.
However, Iran had a trade deficit of $900 million in March-November as imports into the country topped $32 billion, an increase of 38% compared to the similar period last year, according to the IRICA figures.
Basic goods accounted for 38% of the value of all imports into Iran in the eight months to late November, said Mir-Asharfi, adding that the government provided some $9.9 billion of funds to subsidize those shipments at an official exchange rate which is eight times lower than the current market price.
The UAE, the main reexporting hub in the Persian Gulf, remained the largest supplier of goods to Iran in March-November with $10.1 billion worth of exports to the country, followed by China at $7.2 billion and Turkey at $3.2 billion, said the IRICA chief.
Germany and Switzerland were the fourth- and fifth-largest exporters to Iran over the same period with $1.2 billion and $1.1 billion worth of shipments, he said.