0918 GMT July 20, 2019
Trading saffron on domestic stock exchange has led to a rise in exports of the product since March 2018, said the managing director of Iran Mercantile Exchange (IME).
According to figures by the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA), 105 tons of saffron valued at $145 million were exported during March 21-September 22, 2018, indicating a 40-percent growth compared to the figure for the same period of the year earlier.
Iran's National Saffron Council predicts that, given the fluctuations in foreign currency rates in domestic market, overseas sales of the product will continue its increasing trend to reach 200 tons by March 20, 2019.
Commenting on the increase in Iran's saffron exports in the year to March 21, 2019, Hamed Soltaninejad told Iran Daily that although part of this growth was a consequence of fluctuations in domestic foreign currency market, it was mainly due to the prices of the product becoming more transparent as a result of its trade on stock exchange, as acknowledged by domestic saffron market activists.
He noted in addition, many of those who were, due to various reasons, unable to export the product in previous years, managed to sell their products in foreign markets after getting to know their price on the stock exchange.
Soltaninejad added in the year to March 2020, the international ring of saffron — trading sessions held to exchange goods destined exclusively for international markets — will be launched.
He said the difference between the international and national rings of saffron is that in the former saffron can be traded in currencies other than the rial in Iranian free zones, helping determine the dollar price of saffron which, per se, prepares the ground for greater presence of international traders in Iran's saffron market.
Commenting on saffron trade on the stock exchange, IME CEO noted this has helped saffron prices become more transparent enabling foreign traders willing to enter the Iranian market of the product to conduct their activities with greater ease by observing the prices on the stock exchange market's digital board.
Saffron being traded on the stock exchange also helps Iranian saffron producers and traders learn about the price of their product in international markets and the fluctuations in global prices, he said, adding this will also help envisage a brighter future for domestic saffron producers as they know at what price they can sell their product.
"On the other hand, given that a number of warehouses have been confirmed and admitted into the IME, those saffron farmers who produce standard products can store them in these place, receive a certificate of deposit and, then, sell their products in the market whenever prices are suitable."
This will help eliminate intermediaries, he said.
Soltaninejad noted that 10 percent of exchanges on commodity bourse pertains to agro products.