Iran-Pakistan free zone to open “in coming weeks”

Iran and Pakistan are about to open a joint free zone in the coming weeks, according to Iranian media reports.  

The announcement comes after a meeting between Mohammad Rafii, Iranian consul in Pakistan’s Balochistan province, and Jam Kamal Khan, Chief Minister of Balochistan early January.

“Expanding relations with Pakistan has been very important for the Islamic Republic government and Balochistan is the bridge connecting the two countries’ ties,” said, Mohammad Rafii in Balochistan provincial capital Quetta.

The free trade zone is set to be established in the Iranian city of Mirjaveh, some six kilometers from the Pakistani border. It’s also the main road crossing point between the two countries.

For his part, the Balochistan chief minister stressed that relations between Iran and Pakistan are interconnected and the expansion of trade and economic ties with the neighbouring country will be realized only through boosting economic activities.

Iran exported commodities to Pakistan worth 860 million dollars during the last eight months of the current Persian year (21 March-21-October, 2018), according to Mahmoud Haji Yousefi Pour, Iran’s commercial attache in Pakistan, was cited by Iran’s official news agency IRNA. “This shows a 25% rise,” added the official.

Iran’s current trade balance with Pakistan is positive, worth 655 million dollars while the mutual trade is estimated to stand at over one billion dollars. The free zone is expected to increase it to up to five billion dollars.

Sources: Iran Chamber of Commerce

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