Iran says surrendered garment market to foreigners ‘for nothing’

Business Materials 4 September 2017 20:14 (UTC +04:00)

Tehran, Iran, September 4

By Mehdi Sepahvand - Trend:

Iran has surrendered its garment market to foreigners for nothing, the country’s Minister of Industry, Mine, and Trade Mohammad Shariatmadari said.

Inaugurating the 5Th International Iran Apparel Exhibition in Tehran, Shariatmadari said unbridled smuggling of clothing items into the country has crippled the garment industry in the country, Trend correspondent reported from the Tehran Permanent Fairground September 4.

Iran is suffering not only worth $2.5 billion of officially declared garment smuggling, but many of the apparently legally imported clothing items also come while no tariff has been paid for them, the minister insisted.

He went on to doubt that the officially announced number says the real amount of smuggled clothes in Iran, saying he believed the real number is much greater.

Iran imports worth $12 billion clothing items per year. The biggest suppliers of the items are China and Turkey.

He also blamed part of the problem on the fact that while the profitability of the clothing industry in Iran stands somewhere around 10 percent, banking facilities are given with interest rates around 20 percent.

Much of the problem causing smuggling into Iran, not only of clothing items but other items as well, has to do with the lack of ample distribution of wealth and job opportunities in remote areas and especially around borders. To reduce the risk of economic, social, and security aftermaths of this shortcoming, the Iranian government has given special permission to the residents of these areas to engage in suitcase trade of goods from over borders.