KABUL (TCA) — The Afghan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) says that trade between Afghanistan and Iran continues to increase, TOLOnews reports.
The deputy director of ACCI Khanjan Alkozai said that in future Iran could become Afghanistan’s largest trading partner – especially once Iran’s Chabahar port becomes fully operational.
According to officials, Afghanistan has in the past seven months become the fifth largest trade market for Iranian goods.
Officials at the ACCI said that currently, due to problems along Pakistan’s roads, most Afghan businessmen are trying to reroute imports and exports through Iran and India.
“Our business with Iran is expanding, with the facilities that exist, and also with the Chabahar port on the verge of opening to Afghanistan’s commercial and transit goods most of the businessmen are trying to boost their business through Chabahar port,” Alkozai said.
Similarly, officials from the Iranian customs department have told Iranian media that in the past seven months they have exported $1.5 billion USD worth of goods to Afghanistan, an increase of 11 percent against last year.
The Afghan Ministry of Commerce and Industry says trade with regional countries is now based on the government’s new strategy.
“The Afghan government is working to expand its trade relations with all neighboring countries, especially with countries that are honest in this relationship,” said Musafer Qoqandi, spokesman for the ministry of commerce and industries.
The ACCI is optimistic about Chabahar port opening up for Afghan exports and said once this port is fully operational, trade volume between Iran and India will further increase.