TEHRAN, Iran, March 28
Iran's export has shrunk by 17 percent since early March, while the country's import volume wasn't affected by the coronavirus spread, said the head of Iran Trade Promotion Organization of Iran Hamid Zadboum, Trend reports via IRNA.
"The coronavirus has affected the trade in many countries, including Iran, and the export volumes have dropped down," he said.
"Some neighboring countries have closed joined borders with Iran, although our ministries have announced that Iranian cargos have followed health protocols to the highest degree," he added.
"Some of the bans were to prevent movement of passengers that carried contaminated goods. The prohibition of passenger transportation would also make trucks transit impossible so the goods are traded at the borders," he said.
"We should not allow foreign trade to be hurt but the virus has affected the entire world. For example, China's export has dropped by $190 billion," he said.
Iran is one of the countries heavily affected by the rapidly-spreading coronavirus. According to recent reports from the Iranian officials, over 32,300 people have been infected, 2,378 people have already died. Meanwhile, over 11,000 have reportedly recovered from the disease.
The country continues to apply strict measures to contain the further spread. Reportedly, the disease was brought to Iran by a businessman from Iran's Qom city, who went on a business trip to China, despite official warnings. The man died later from the disease.
The Islamic Republic only announced its first infections and deaths from the coronavirus on Feb. 19.
Some sources claim the coronavirus outbreak started as early as November 2019.
The World Health Organization (WHO) on March 11 declared COVID-19 a pandemic.