Import and Export Laws in Iran

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The Law on Import and Export Regulations ratified on September 26th, 1993, should be considered as the principal source of export and import law in Iran.

According to the Iranian law, there are three types of goods, in light of the export and import as follows:

  •  The goods and commodities which their import or export is allowable and admissible even without obtainment of the prerequisite license (permissible goods).
  •  The goods and commodities that the import or export requires the obtainment of the license from Iranian authorities (conditional goods), and
  • The goods and commodities that their import or exportis forbidden and prohibited under the Islamic rules or the laws and regulations of Iran (prohibited goods).

How should we learn about the actual feasibility of importing and exporting of the special goods in Iran?

The General Office for Export and Import Regulations of the Ministry of Mine, Industry and Trade, on an annual basis, publishes the Export – Import Regulations in order to provide the fast and easy access to the updated information in terms of import and export.

The annual Export – Import Regulations of Iran regulates the updated customs duties as well as commercial benefit taxes on the different groups of commodities.

Considering the current un-employment rate of Iran which is much higher than the international standards, one of the main concerns of the Iranian authorities is to support domestic production by permitting importation of the necessary raw materials and the cutting edge machinery.

In order to support the domestic products, the importation of the raw materials and the intermediates products which have been domestically produced in Iran, has a higher rate of commercial benefit tax which annually defined by the Export – Import Regulations.

The role of the Commercial Card in Iran

As a prerequisite of performing trade business in Iran, the traders are required to obtain the Commercial Card which has been issued by the Iranian Chamber of Commerce. The applicant of the Commercial Card could be an individual or a company.

The facilities provided for the importation of the raw materials and goods which are used in domestic production.

According to Article 12 of the Iran import and Export Law, the importation of raw materials and goods which are supposed to be used in the domestic productions is exempted from payment of the import duties and costs. These types of goods are also exempted from obtainment of the required licenses as set forth in the annex of the Export – Import Regulations.

Even if the imported goods have been exported without any changes or transformation, the importer is subject to the facilities of the above-mentioned article.

The necessity of “Order Registration” and “Import License” issued by the Ministry of Industry, Mine and Trade of Iran for all of the importable goods
According to article 5 of the Executive Ordinance of law on Export and Import, all of the importable goods, to be imported to Iran, are required to obtain the order registration and import license. The following goods are exempted from such a procedure:

  1. The goods which are required by the families residing in Borden towns and by sailors and vessel crew, within the limits of the list set out in the ordinance;
  2. Special military goods;
  3. The goods of the arrival passengers within the legal limitation;
  4. The imported goods through the mail post service within the legal limitation;
  5. The commercial samples;
  6. The samples of goods which are aimed to be presented in the international exhibitions.

The goods which are totally prohibited to be imported to Iran

  1. Alcoholic drinks (all types and models);
  2. Gambling tools;
  3. Weapons, ammunitions and explosive materials;
  4. Narcotic drugs;
  5. All the materials such as magazines, photos, movies and etc. which are in contradiction to the official religion of Iran.
  6. Any other goods and commodities prohibited by the authorities in accordance to the laws and regulations of Iran on a permanent or temporary basis.

Iran’s trade value exchanged with 15 neighboring states in the first 11 months of the current Iranian year (March 21, 2021-February 22, 2022) has considerably increased, Spokesman for the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) announced.

“Iran’s value of trade exchanged with 15 neighboring countries from March 21, 2021, to Feb. 22, 2022, reached $46.2 billion, showing a $14 billion growth as compared to the same period of last year,” Seyed Rouhollah Latifi said.

Some 92,256,219 tons of non-oil goods, valued at $46,245,716,06, were exchanged between Iran and 15 neighboring states in the 11 months of the current year, showing a 22 and 42 percent growth in terms of weight and value respectively as compared to the last year’s corresponding period.

He put the value of trade exchanged between Iran and 15 neighboring states in 11 months of the previous year in 1399 (from March 21, 2020, to Feb. 22, 2021) at $32.4 billion, the rate of which registered a considerable growth in the same period of the current year.

“Iran exported 70,259,636 tons of products, valued at $23,528,428,257, to neighboring states, showing a 13 and 28 percent growth in terms of weight and value respectively as compared to the same period of last year,” Latifi added.

Iranian President Seyed Ebrahim Rayeesi has said that his government pursues the policy of broadening relations with the neighboring countries.

In 2020, Iran was the number 49 economy in the world in terms of GDP (current US$), the number 86 in total exports, the number 71 in total imports, the number 142 economy in terms of GDP per capita (current US$) and the number 65 most complex economy according to the Economic Complexity Index (ECI).

The top exports of Iran are Ethylene Polymers ($2.17B), Crude Petroleum ($1.18B), Other Nuts ($913M), Acyclic Alcohols ($832M), and Semi-Finished Iron ($595M), exporting mostly to China ($5.85B), Turkey ($1.16B), Pakistan ($352M), United Arab Emirates ($345M), and Germany ($302M).

The top imports of Iran are Broadcasting Equipment ($2.23B), Corn ($1.09B), Rice ($885M), Vehicle Parts ($625M), and Soybeans ($548M), importing mostly from China ($8.51B), United Arab Emirates ($4.53B), India ($2.24B), Turkey ($2.14B), and Germany ($1.68B).

Iran borders Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey, and Turkmenistan by land and Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates by sea.

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