Press TV | 26 April 2021
Iran, Turkey to revise preferential trade agreement signed in 2015
Iran and Turkey are negotiating to revise a major trade deal signed six years ago as the neighbors seek to offset trade losses suffered in recent years because of the US sanctions on Iran and the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
Iranian president’s chief of staff Mahmoud Vaezi said on Monday that Iranian and Turkish officials would discuss corrections on the preferential trade agreement (PTA) signed in 2015 during a high-profile economic and business meeting planned for late this week in the Iranian capital Tehran.
Vaezi suggested that Iran would press Turkey to increase the number of goods subject to lower tariffs under the current agreement.
“We seek a revision to goods categories to enable our merchants and traders to benefit more from the current preferential trade agreement,” said the senior Iranian official.
Based on the current PTA deal, Iran has lowered import tariffs for 125 Turkish goods while Turkey considers similar arrangements for a total of 140 goods imported from Iran.
Iran has posted trade deficits with Turkey in recent years mainly because its energy exports to the western neighbor have been hampered by US sanctions.
Iran and Turkey had set a target of $30 billion in bilateral trade before the sanctioned and the pandemic hit economic exchanges between the two neighbors.
Vaezi said trade ties between Iran and Turkey could boom if international talks being held in Austria to revive a 2015 agreement on Iran’s nuclear program bears fruit.
“The two sides are insisting on the need to expand trade ties and economic exchanges and God Willing, the move toward that goal would speed up with the lifting of the sanctions,” he said.