Tehran, Iran, February 10
By Mehdi Sepahvand -- Trend:
Iran's nuclear deal with world powers, called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), was said to denote the opening of Iran's market to the world and ease trade. The deal ended years-long sanctions on Iran and businessmen and well as customers were hoping to gain easier access to foreign goods and services.
About one month since the deal was put to practice, those active in the Iranian market say their dreams have not yet come true and they do not expect much change for certain reasons. "I've in in this business for 40 years.
We pray to God the market made a move and things turn normal. Relations with world have grown better and making contacts is much easier after the JCPOA. But what we expect most is to have fixed prices in order to be sure of our business," one businessman who imports doorknobs and other building equipment told Trend February 10.
"I am a producer with factory and workers. After the JCPOA not only have raw material and workforce not gone down in price, but insurance fees have risen and there is loads of raw material stuck in customhouses because the prices are going to go higher and the government has halted the material's release until new prices are established," a hardware producer said.
Asked if there has been any change in the behavior of customers after the nuclear deal, Mehrabi, the owner of a warehouse said people are trying not to buy anything yet because they are waiting for prices to fall.
"Even if prices fall and there are various countries to import from, no big change is expected. Top-quality goods come from countries such as Turkey and Italy. But they come with much higher prices than Chinese-made goods and a few percentage of people can afford them. China is everything. No one can compete with China," he added.
China remained Iran's big trade partner in the past few years despite harsh Western sanctions. The country was Iran's biggest source of non-oil goods import at the same time as it was its biggest oil customer. Iran exported 17.56 million tons of non-oil goods, worth $5.33 billion to China during the first eight months of 2015. Iran's non-oil exports to China witnessed a fall of 15.3 percent in terms of value while the volume of the Islamic Republic's non-oil exports to China decreased by 25.4 percent, according to Iranian Customs Administration latest monthly report published Oct. 4.
China was the main importer of Iranian goods in the mentioned period. Beijing's imports accounted for 22.7 percent of Iran's total non-oil exports in terms of value and 33.3 percent in terms of volume.
During the sanction period China was the number one destination of Iran's crude oil and no change will be made in this sphere in the new era, Iranian Deputy Oil Minister Amir Hossein Zamaninia said January 17.
Iran and China are planning to sign a contract on currency swap, Iranian ambassador to China Ali Asghar Khaji said recently. China is the world's largest exporter of goods, exporting worth $500 billion to the US and $600 billion to the EU. Iran is seeking to join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.