Iran, Indonesia sign preferential trade agreement

24 May, 2023

Iran and Indonesia on Tuesday signed a preferential trade agreement to expand economic relations during an official visit by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi.

Preferential trade agreement, abolition of visas, cultural exchanges, supervisory cooperation on the production of pharmaceutical products, cooperation in the fields of science, technology and innovation, and bilateral cooperation in the field of oil and gas, were among the cooperation documents signed between two countries.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo, hoped the agreement "would increase trade between Indonesia and Iran" but did not provide details.

Trade between Indonesia and Iran dropped from $715.5 million to $141.6 million in 2019 after the United States imposed sanctions on Iran.

Indonesian trade ministry official Djatmiko Bris Witjaksono said on Tuesday the two countries had agreed on a "countertrade" scheme in which goods and services can be exchanged "without being constrained by scarcity or currency difficulties".

"Iran could be a gateway to the surrounding region, such as Central Asia ... or even to Turkey because we do not have any trade deal with Turkey yet," he said.

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