Iran seeks to create info system for exchange of data on trade

By: Sara Rajabova

Iran intends to establish “trade window” at Astara border checkpoint with Azerbaijan.

Mohammad Shahbazi, the customs curator for Gilan said the Customs Department of Iran’s Gilan Province intends to create a unified information system for the exchange of data on imports and exports at the Astara border checkpoint.

The Iranian Anzali Free Zone’s press service quoted Shahbazi as saying on April 30 that the customs department is ready to cooperate with Caspian countries and strengthen the fight against smuggling.

The Anzali Free Zone, which is the only free economic zone of Iran on the Caspian coast, hosted on April 29-30 the 15th meeting of the heads of commerce chambers of the Caspian countries. The event was attended by about 100 representatives of chambers of commerce and over 400 Iranian businessmen.

Goods are imported and exported through this Anzali Free Zone from the Caspian states, Turkey and Gulf countries.

Shahbazi said the meeting of the Caspian countries’ commerce chambers in the Anzali Free Zone will create an opportunity for the development of trade in the region and economic ties between countries.

He added that the event will also allow for the creation of a foundation to coordinate trade activities and problem solving, as well as create co-investing opportunities for businessmen.

The trade turnover between Iran and Azerbaijan reached $433.8 million during the first eleven months of the last Iranian fiscal year (March 21, 2014-Feb. 20), 7.42 percent less compared to the same months of the preceding year, according to the Iranian Customs Administration.

Iran and Azerbaijan have had diplomatic relations since 1918. Iran recognized Azerbaijan’s independence in 1991, and diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in 1992.

There are six border checkpoints on the Iranian-Azerbaijani border including Julfa, Shakhtakhti, Astara, Bilasuvar and Imishli. The Horadiz border checkpoint hasn’t been operating for a long time.

Since February 2010, Iran unilaterally abolished its visa regime for all citizens of Azerbaijan, with the exception of journalists.

Azerbaijan and Iran also agreed within an intergovernmental commission to simplify the visa regime and the introduction of disposable (30-day) visa for Iranian citizens in the territory of the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic. The charge of the visa fee stands at ten euros.

SOURCE: Azer News