The Afghan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) said Sunday that given the ease of trade with Iran, the trade volume between Afghanistan and its neighbor continues to increase.
The deputy director of ACCI Khanjan Alkozai, said it is possible that in future Iran could become Afghanistan's largest trading partner – especially once Chabahar port is fully operational.
According to officials, Afghanistan has in the past seven months become Iran’s 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, which is an increase of 11 percent against last year.
The Afghan Ministry of Commerce and Industry says trade with regional countries is now based on government’s new strategy.
Officials said a number of Afghanistan’s neighbors have increased their trade volume with the country in these past few months.
“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 meanwhile 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.