Thursday, June 3, 2010

$19 Billion: Iran’s Annual Contraband Trade

Saeed Mortazavi, Iran’s head of anti-smuggling department and former prosecutor of Islamic Revolutionary Court, said today that the country’s contraband trade has reached 19 billion dollars a year.

"Some 16 billion dollars worth of goods have been smuggled into Iran, while three billion dollars worth have been exported illegally during the last Iranian year (ending March 2010)," Mortazavi said [Donya-e Eqtesad, 3 June].

Smuggled imports represents one third of all imports, estimated at 50 billion dollars last year.

“Only three percent of smuggled goods are identified and seized by the police,” Motazavi added.

Much of the illegal trafficking takes place between Iran and its biggest trade partner, the United Arab Emirates.


Anonymous said...

Interesting article Nader. Only yesterday, I read in Middle East Online about the contraband imports of alcohol, make-up etc from Dubai.

According to a survey conducted by TMBA, a private economic research institute, about 14 million urban Iranian women aged between 15 and 45 spend seven dollars on average per month on cosmetics.

Most specialists estimate that about 700 to 750 million dollars worth of products are imported to Iran illegally," said Abbas Najafi, the head of Iran's counter-trafficking bureau.

Vista Bavar, who promotes the recently launched European brand Caprice in Iran, was of the same opinion, stressing that "many products are smuggled into Iran."

Iranians spend about two billion dollars a year on cosmetics and the country of 74 million accounts for 29 percent of the Middle East market, which is dominated by Saudi Arabia, according to a recent survey.

Anonymous said...

this smuggling is done buy the goverment itself.