Iran private sector gauges damaged Syria infrastructure investment

Days after Syrian Economy and Foreign Trade Minister, Mohammad Samer al-Khalil, held high-level talks with Iranian public and private sectors to boost Tehran investment in post-war country, an Iranian private sector delegation is in Syria to evaluate business.

2 January 2019
ID : 1739
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A high-level delegation from Iran Chamber of Commerce has visited the damaged infrastructure across Syria in a bid to gauge Iranian investment in reconstructing war-torn country. 

The visit comes after Syrian Economy and Foreign Trade Minister, Mohamamd Samer al-Khalil, visited Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) on Sunday in a bid to invite Iranian private firms to invest in rebuilding the demolished infrastructure during seven years of deadly war that’s caused thousands of deaths and millions of displacement.

Keivan Kashefi, president of Iran-Syria joint economic committee as well as his VP Hossein Pirmoazen, headed the Iranian delegation. They met heads of Syria’s Chamber of Commerce, the Arab country's Internal Trade and Consumer Protection Minister, Abdullah al-Ghabri, as well as industries minister in the capital Damascus on Tuesday.

The Iranian delegation also toured the demolished facilities in Damascus and the second largest city, Aleppo, saying the Iranian private sector is interested in reconstructing Syria.

Iran stood behind the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from the onset of the civil war that led to an all-out conflict against terrorists, such as the Islamic State, that brough large parts of the country under their control. But, Tehran and Moscow helped the Syrian army to retake those occupied territories.

Iranian business delegation in Syria 

Iran-Syria bilateral trade cooperation has not been on par with their mutual political and military cooperation, though. “We are not content with the level of economic relations in comparison to their political ones,” regretted the president of Iran-Syria joint economic committee. “That’s why the two countries authorities as well their chambers of commerce need to do more to boost economic cooperation,” he added, proposing the creation of a Iran trade center in Damascus as a first step in this direction.  

“We hope that a new chapter in the two countries economic cooperation is opened in near future,” said Syria’s Internal Trade and Consumer Protection Minister, al Ghabri.

For his part, Muhammad Hamsho, Federation of Syrian Chambers of Commerce General Secretary, said Syrian businessmen have expressed readiness to take part in the first Iran-Syria joint Chamber of Commerce that is expected to be formed in near future.

Iran and Syria finalised the text of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) when Syrian Economy and Foreign Trade Minister, Mohammad Samer al-Khalil, visited Iran on Sunday. The agreement is expected to be signed when a high-level Iranian government delegation visits Syria this month. Its exact date is not known yet.

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