Chairman: Iran-China trade volume reaches $38bn
The volume of Iran's trade with China has reached $38 billion from $7 billion ten years ago, says the chairman of Sino-Iranian Chamber of Commerce, Press TV reported.
Asadollah Asgaroladi said on Sunday that direct trade between the two countries currently stands at $29 billion that would reach $38 billion by including indirect Iran-China trade through the UAE, Afghanistan and Pakistan, Moj news agency reported.
Asgaroladi, who is also the head of the Iranian Chamber of Commerce, further pointed out that the Sino-Iranian chamber has more than 5,000 members.
Earlier this month, the Iranian official stressed the importance of promoting trade cooperation with China, calling on the two countries to take new steps towards investment.
Iran and China have drawn plans to increase the value of bilateral trade exchanges to $50 billion by 2015, Asgaroladi said in the Chinese capital city of Beijing.
"We do not seek to expand trade ties based on consumer products, but think of implementing joint projects," he further explained.
He pointed to Iran's economic, political and geographical strategic position in the Middle East, saying, "We can have the highest level of trade ties with China in the region."
Asgaroladi went on to say that joint investments would strengthen amicable ties between the two countries and said joint ventures would prevent mutual ties from being affected by political events.
The Islamic Republic welcomes foreign investments, especially from longtime trade partners such as China.
Iran is currently China's third largest supplier of crude, providing China with roughly 12 percent of its total annual oil consumption -- nearly one million barrels per day.