Report by OD bureau, New Delhi: In a bid to promote two-way trade and lure investors, a high-powered 50 member ASSOCHAM business delegation is on a four day visit to Iran as part of the 12th Tehran International Industry Exhibition (TIIE).
The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) has mounted a multi-sectoral business delegation to Iran between October 5-8, 2012 to explore business prospects for Indian industries in Iran and spread awareness about attractiveness for doing business in India.
“Indian industry has huge scope for investments in Iran in sectors like construction equipment, building material, hardware, pharmaceuticals, telecom, textiles, automobiles’ spare parts and others,” said Mr Anil K. Agarwal, chairman of International Affairs Council of ASSOCHAM spearheading the delegation.
“Besides, India offers wonderful trade opportunity for our counterparts in Iran in import of crude oil, fertilizers, zinc, copper, iron, coal, uranium, manganese and other such industrial metals,” said the ASSOCHAM past-president. “The visit would not only further strengthen the bilateral trade and co-operation between the two countries but will also result in a win-win situation for both the countries.”
The annual bilateral trade between India and Iran is currently estimated at about $15 billion and is heavily imbalanced and biased towards Iran which exports goods, mainly oil, worth over $12 billion and imports goods worth a meagre $2.5 billion.
“Our major concern is to curb the huge trade imbalance between India and Iran which should import more from India especially agricultural commodities like wheat, rice and sugar,” said Mr Agarwal. “We would urge our counterparts in Iran to invest in India's burgeoning real estate sector, besides, we would also pitch for a liberal multi-entry business visa regime, more direct flights, organising trade fairs and exhibitions at regular intervals as it could spur the bilateral trade by at least $10 billion in near future.”
The west Asian nation which accounts for about 12 per cent of India’s growing energy needs offers huge opportunities for Indian industries in road construction, railway networks, port infrastructure, information technology, readymade garments, medical equipment etc.
The ASSOCHAM delegation would also discuss issues like lowering tariff lines as per the preferential trading agreement, evolving a secure payment mechanism thereby streamlining the banking procedures for smooth business transactions.
The ASSOCHAM delegation comprises of industrialists representing from wheat, rice, tea, coffee, agriculture food for animals, auto components, automobiles, minerals & mining, pharmaceuticals etc.