Iran and Syria sign free trade pact

Dec 17, 2011 12:00 AM

Iran and Syria have signed a free trade agreement in a bid to boost bilateral trade especially in industry, mining and agriculture, the deputy industry, mine and trade minister stated.
The deal was signed after the Iranian parliament passed a bill for free trade with Syria. The bill provided for free trade between Iran and Syria within the next five years.

Hamid Safdel added that the deal would pave the way for the two sides to increase annual trade to $ 5 bn. Currently, Safdel said, engineering services is Iran’s main exports to Syria, which amounted to $ 2.2 bn in the last Iranian calendar year which ended on March 20, 2011.
The two countries’ trade value (excluding technical and engineering services exports) stood at $ 336 mm last year.

Iranian firms are currently carrying out different construction projects in Syria such as cement factory, hydroelectric power plants, glass factory, and silos.
Senior Iranian lawmaker Allaedin Boroujerdi said that the free trade pact was "a firm response" to the United States and its allies which are "investing billions of dollars to change the political structure of the Syrian government".

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