Iran’s non-oil trade down drastically

Business Materials 10 November 2015 16:28 (UTC +04:00)
Statistics reveal that Iranian exports and imports have fallen drastically in the seven months since the beginning of the current Iranian fiscal year on March 21
Iran’s non-oil trade down drastically

Tehran, Iran, November 10

By Dalga Khatinoglu, Mehdi Sepahvand -- Trend:

Statistics reveal that Iranian exports and imports have fallen drastically in the seven months since the beginning of the current Iranian fiscal year on March 21.

A detailed report by the Iranian Customs Administration, published on November 10, indicates that the country's non-oil exports fell 15 percent in the period, compared to the same period in 2014, to reach $24.131 billion.

Further, according to the report, the country's imports plunged 21 percent, reaching $24,076 billion, indicating that the value of Iran's non-oil exports is more than its imports.

The major reason behind the decline in exports has been the reduction in revenues from oil-related goods. Iran includes some of these goods when measuring its non-oil basket.

For example, oil condensates, a kind of ultra-light crude oil, comprises over 20 percent of the country's reported non-oil exports. Although Iran's exports of these products have increased some two percent in the 2015 period, its value declined 41 percent.

In the meantime, the value of the country's petrochemical exports remained roughly the same as before. This comes despite the fact that Iran exported 36 percent more petrochemical products in the 2015 period, compared to the same period in 2014.

Together, Iran has exported over $13 billion in gas condensates and petrochemical products in 2015, accounting for 54 percent of the country's non-oil exports.

Also, products such as bitumen, propane, butane, polyethylene grades, light oils and methanol (oil and gas products) are the top Iranian exported goods. These saw great increases in exports in 2015, in terms of volume, but the revenue they brought to Iran greatly declined.

In the meantime, while the exporting of Iranian goods to all continents has declined, Europe has been the exception.

Iran increased its non-oil exports to Europe by 1.5 percent, while exports declined on other continents. However, Europe's share of Iran's exported goods is somewhere below five percent, while 93 percent of Iranian non-oil goods are sent to Asia.

During the 2015 period, China, the UAE, South Korea, Turkey, and India were the top exporters to Iran, though they reduced their exports to the country by 14 percent, 34 percent, 4 percent, 16 percent, and 40 percent, respectively.

Of the top five importers of Iranian goods, China, reduced its purchase of non-oil Iranian products by over 21 percent, while Iraq, the UAE, India, and Afghanistan increased their share. The UAE, in particular, doubled its import of Iranian goods.

The report further says that Iran's top five imported goods were agricultural products, such as livestock corn, wheat, beans, rice, and soybean meal, valued at $2.7 billion.

Also, 75 percent of those goods imported to Iran came from Asia.

In the meantime, the import of cars was also nearly halved. During the 2015 period, Iran imported 23,786 cars worth $755 million.

Some of the country's imports came from Switzerland ($1.4 billion, 32 percent growth), France ($415 million, 22 percent growth), the UK ($227 million, minus 16 percent growth), Austria ($113 million, minus 23 percent growth), and Denmark ($113 million, 37 percent growth).

Germany and Italy reduced their exports to Iran by 32 and 17 percent, respectively, as Germany's exports reached $1 billion and Italy's were $500 million. Germany is the sixth, and Italy the ninth, largest exporters to Iran.

Also, Iran's imports from the US declined 11 percent to reach $13.6 million. The US is not among the top importers of goods from Iran.