TEHRAN, Iran, Dec.10
Considering that free trade zones in Iran occupy only 0.03 percent of the entire country, it would be better to facilitate business and trade there, head of Iran's Central Task Force to Combat the Smuggling of Commodities and Currency Ali Moayedi said, Trend reports via the official website of Iranian free zones.
Earlier, Attorney-General Hojjatoleslam Mohammad Jafar Montazeri criticized the current condition of free trade zones and said the zones have turned into hubs for smuggling goods.
"The charge against the free zones isn't fair," Moayedi said. "Proper management of the zones is more effective and necessary, in case of the free zones."
He went on to add that the processes designed at Iran's Central Task Force to Combat the Smuggling of Commodities and Currency to regulate the activities of free and special economic zones, can serve as a model for the transparency in the country.
Previously, Supreme Council of Iran’s Free Trade, Industrial and Special Economic Zones Morteza Bank said that foreign investments in Iran's free zones have reached $1.5 billion over the past six years, and as much as $3 billion in special economic zones.
Total non-oil exports from the country's free and special economic zones amounted to $161 billion in the past six years, and total imports into these zones amounted $40 billion over the same time period, Bank said.
He also said that some 10 percent of smuggling into Iran occurs via the free zones, due to customs violations.