Asre Khodro: Iranian auto companies inked three agreements with Swedish, Turkish and Indian auto-manufacturers in Tehran on Monday.
Reporting "Asre Khodro", The deals were signed on the sidelines of the Third Iran Automotive Industry International Conference which opened in Tehran on the same day.
Over 363 domestic and 137 foreign companies from 23 countries are taking part in the three-day event which will continue until March 2.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the conference, Mohammadreza Nematzadeh, the minister of industries, mines and trade said his ministry is committed to maintaining a positive balance in automotive industry.
Domestic auto industry, he said, is required to generate substantial revenues and accelerate both its own development and that of the national economy.
Nematzadeh underlined that Iran's auto-manufacturing sector accounts for 10 percent of the value-added generated in the industrial sector.
He said the automotive industry ranks third in creating job opportunities and employs modern technologies in its platforms.
The minister noted that the industry aims to increase its designing and engineering capacities, produce three million cars per annum and establish partnerships with foreign automakers.
Talks with foreign companies
In another interview on the sidelines of the conference, Nematzadeh said negotiations on cooperation with East Asian and European automakers are also underway.
He said the East Asian companies involved in the talks are from Japan and South Korea.
"Considerable revenues will be generated with the activation of export section."
Touching upon Iran-Turkey cooperation, he said the two countries are keen on fostering economic and industrial relations, particularly in the auto industry sector.
On Sunday, Nematzadeh opened the First Auto-Making Industry Capabilities Exhibition in Tehran's International Fairgrounds.
He told reporters of the sideline of the expo's opening ceremony that Iran has reached an agreement with German automaker Daimler.
He added no specific policy has yet been adopted on auto import tariffs.
The minister said the government would probably begin examining a reduction in tariffs within two weeks.
Asked why the goods basket of the domestic auto industry is more inclined towards China, Nematzadeh said, "Many countries discontinued their ties with Iran due to Western sanctions; this is while, China continued its cooperation with Tehran."
Commenting on the country's failure to sign more than one auto deal with foreign companies following the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the minister said, "Only 45 days have elapsed since the JCPOA went into effect. Negotiations are currently underway with East Asian and European automakers. In addition to Peugeot, we have reached an agreement with Daimler of Germany."
Nematzadeh noted that close to 500 representatives of foreign companies will inspect Iranian auto capabilities at the exhibition.
Some 212 domestic companies are showcasing their capabilities and latest achievements in the expo which will continue until March 2.