Iran, EAEU sign free trade deal

The Cradle, January 19, 2023 — The EAEU and Iran signed a temporary agreement in December 2021 to set up a free trade zone and counter US-led sanctions.

Iran and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), led by Russia, have signed a free trade deal that will let them export more than 90% of their products without paying any tariffs, according to the IRNA news agency.

Iranian Deputy Trade Minister Alireza Peymanpak and EAEU Minister of Trade Andrey Slepnev signed the free trade agreement in Tehran on 19 January.

Peymanpak stated after the agreement was signed that it would enter into force after being accepted by the governments and parliaments of Iran and the five EAEU members: Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Belarus, within the following nine months.

He said that the free trade deal with Iran is anticipated to receive formal approval from the administrative governments of EAEU nations over the coming weeks.

However, the minister continued that the agreement will allow for the tariff-free export of more than 90% of the parties’ goods.

Meanwhile, Slepnev stated that Iran and the EAEU had agreed on the majority of key points required to wrap up negotiations for establishing a free trade zone.

In November 2019, Iran signed a preferential trade deal with the EAEU as part of government efforts to diversify trade avenues and counteract the effects of American sanctions on the nation’s economic interactions with the rest of the world.

Last September, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow supports Iran joining the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), emphasizing that this will have a positive impact on the organization’s output.

“We are convinced that Iran’s full-fledged participation will have a positive impact on the organization’s work, as this country plays an important role in the Eurasian region and in the world as a whole,” the Russian president said.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said that Washington seeks to impose internal laws on the international system as well as independent states, essentially “blocking these countries on their path to development.”

He added that the SCO should “adopt special measures to confront the United States’ unilateralism and cruel sanctions.”

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