TEHRAN – The Secretary of the Higher Council of Iranian Free Zones, Hamidreza Mo’meni, said that the trade balance of the country’s free and special economic zones has been positive for the past two years despite the country’s negative foreign trade balance.
Mo’meni made the remarks during a meeting with deputies and directors of Imam Khomeini Airport City (IKAC) on Thursday, IRNA reported.
Today, the free zones are in a good commercial state as wise and positive development measures have been taken which have led to significant growth in these zones, the official said.
He further announced the creation of a finance council within the Iranian High Council of Free Zones, saying that advisory groups will soon be sent to all free zones in the country and that the zones will be able to access sustainable financial resources to support them. implement new development programs.
According to the official, the country’s free and economic zones should become more productive so that they can finance their own development projects in the future.
Mentioning the business advantages of IKAC as a free zone, Mo’meni said that IKAC can benefit from the experience of other free zones across the country to maximize its capabilities.
Earlier this month, Mo’meni said that eliminating the problems of the active private sector in the country’s free and economic zones was the council’s new approach.
The development of free zones and special economic zones through production, exports and investment is one of the objectives of the creation of these zones in the country.
To achieve this objective, various measures have been taken over the past two years, such as the attraction of innovative and technological units in these areas and the introduction of investment opportunities and advantages in these areas.
The establishment of free zones in Iran dates back to the Iranian calendar year 1368 (March 1989-March 1990) following the fall in the country’s oil revenues the previous year which prompted the government to promote non-oil exports.
Iran’s first two free trade zones were established in the south of the country. The first was the Kish Free Trade Area established in 1368 on Kish Island in the Persian Gulf and the second was the Qeshm Free Trade Area established the following year on Qeshm Island in the Strait. of Ormuz.
Some five other free zones have also been established in the country since then, including Chabahar in the south-eastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan, Arvand in the south-western part of the province of Khuzestan, Anzali in the north of the province of Gilan, Aras in the province of eastern Azerbaijan and Maku in western Azerbaijan. Province, both in the northwest of the country.
Given the important role that free zones play in promoting the country’s exports and employment, Iran is seriously pursuing the development of its existing zones as well as the creation of new zones.
More development measures in this area have been taken since the reimposition of US sanctions against the Iranian economy in November 2018, as Iran reduces its dependence on oil revenues while increasing its domestic production and exports. non-petroleum.
Although the sanctions disrupted Iran’s economic activities, they could not hinder the development of Iranian free zones; in fact, the development of these areas has even accelerated.
Many of the strides made in increasing activities in free zones have played an important role in boosting the country’s non-oil exports and brought prosperity to other economic sectors.
EF / MA