Syria in urgent need of raw materials: Damascus Chamber of Industry

The Arab country eyes shedding the dust and rebuilding itself after eight years of a devastating war that has left it in ruins. Iranian raw materials are the most-need items that Damascus needs in reconstruction era.

1 May 2019
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The Arab country eyes shedding the dust and rebuilding itself after eight years of a devastating war that has left it in ruins. Iranian raw materials are the most-need items that Damascus needs in reconstruction era.

Damascus Chamber of Industry President Samer al-Debs at ICCIMA in Tehran on Wednesday 01 May. IRAN CHAMBER NEWSROOM/Bahareh Taghi Abadi

The Damascus Chamber of Industry (DCI) says the country is urgently in need of raw materials in a bid to rebuild its infrastructure that’s been damaged during eight years of war.

“In Syria we need raw materials. We know that you have strategic big companies and we need to do mutual companies between us for strategic industries,” Damascus Chamber of Industry President Samer al-Debs told Iran Chamber Newsroom.

He made the remark at the end of the sixth Iran-Syria joint business forum that was held at Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) in Tehran on Wednesday.

Watch video: Damascus Chamber of Industry president seeks Iranian raw materials in his Tehran visit 

 

The Syrian business figure emphasised that Iran and Syria can both function as "a pair of lungs" for each other as both are under the sanctions that have taken a toll on their economic activities.

Also, Syrian Ambassador to Iran Adnan Mahmoud, who attended the meeting, called for an "economic mobilisation" between Tehran and Damascus in a bid to offset the economic sanctions.

The forum was attended by Keyvan Kashefi, President of Iran-Syria joint economic committee, Hassan Danaifar, secretary of the committee to develop Iran’s economic relations with Iraq and Syria, Fahad Darwish, vice president of Syria-Iran joint economic committee as well as Syrian envoy Mahmoud.

Danaifar and Kashefi expressed hope for opening of land transit route from Iran to Syria passing through Iraq in a bid to increase the export of Iranian products to the Arab country and other Arab countries.

However, all business officials stressed the need for establishing joint companies. “What we need most at this moment is Joint Venture between Iranian and Syrian companies because we can then export jointly-produced goods to other Arab countries as there are free trade agreements between Syria and other Arab nations,” Danaifar, who serves as the Iranian liaison between Iranian, Iraqi and Syrian industries.   

A large Syrian delegation, made up of clothing, petrochemical, agricultural and bicycle companies, were present at the forum. A big number of Iranian businessmen and women held Business to Business (B2B) talks with Syria companies and firms.

Iran is hard at work to take a lion’s share of the Syrian reconstruction market as the destructive eight-year war is getting closer to its end.

Recently, Iranian First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri led a large political and economic delegation to Syria in a bid to seal an array of Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) and agreements to boost their trade and economic cooperation.

The two countries are also seeking to reach 3 billion dollars in their annual trade volume. However, lack of banking relations has impeded further bilateral economic ties. “Central Bank of Iran (CBI) and Central Bank of Syria signed an agreement to open direct financial channel and we hope that memorandum is followed up on very soon,” Danaifar noted.

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