Behzad declared on Thursday that Iran and Iraq signed an agreement to facilitate trade cooperation and remove trade barriers between the two neighbors, reported Tasnim News Agency.
He added that the pact was signed during a recent visit by the head of the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran, Mojtaba Khosrotaj, and the accompanying delegation to Iraq.
During the visit, the Iran-Iraq Joint Trade Committee held a meeting for the first time in Baghdad aiming to boost Iranian traders’ participation in the Iraqi market.
The committee discussed important issues including banking cooperation, standardization of commodities, customs regulations and investment opportunities as well as technical and engineering services along with transportation, Behzad said.
In the meantime, an agreement was signed between the two countries based on which preparations should be made for establishing a joint industrial town, and what methods should be developed for verifying the standards and quality of Iranian products.
Besides, the agreement aims to facilitate visa issuance for Iranian businessmen, increase the number of Iranian exhibitions in Iraq, and remove barriers for Iranian exports to Iraq.
On July 16, the Secretary General of the Iran-Iraq Joint Chamber of Commerce Seyed Hamid Hosseini said that Tehran would raise $5 billion in revenues for its gas and electricity exports to Iraq by the end of the current Iranian calendar year on March 20, 2020.
Iran’s technical and engineering projects, which had been stopped in Iraq due to terrorist activities, have resumed, Hosseini added. Meanwhile, new projects will be commissioned in neighboring Iraq by year’s end.
Presently, projects such as sports stadium, water and sewage projects, and housing projects, which had been stopped in Iraq due to the presence of Daesh terrorists, will restart their work, he said.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Hosseini pointed to organizing the Iran-Iraq Joint Economic Forum and added, “This Forum will be held on July 21-22 in the Iraqi capital Baghdad in the presence of relevant officials and organizations.”
Earlier, various issues such as the construction of industrial parks, the transit of goods and development of railways had been discussed between the two countries, he said, adding, “These issues will be reviewed in this joint commission.”
Iran exports non-oil commodities such as cement, gas and electricity to Iraq. In the year from March 2018 to March 2019, Iran exported close to $9 billion of products to Iraq, registering a 37-percent growth compared to the preceding year.
The two countries’ officials have set the target of $20 billion per year for the Iran-Iraq trade.