IRU member the Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) has opened a new TIR office in Bandar Abbas. Iran has issued more TIR carnets than any other country over the past two years.
With Iran’s transit increasing by 68% in 2021, ICCIMA has opened a new TIR office in Bandar Abbas, where around 70% of the country’s trade passes through.
Bandar Abbas plays a pivotal role as a transit hub in the region, connecting, in particular, the Caucasus and Central Asian countries to South and Southeast Asia as well as neighbouring countries.
In a video address recorded for the inauguration ceremony of the new TIR office, IRU Secretary General Umberto de Pretto said, “We are well aware of Bandar Abbas’s pivotal role as a transit hub in the region. The figures speak for themselves.
“But we should not stop here. There is always room for improvement. Iran’s transit potential has yet to be fully unleashed. We all need to work together to reach the target of 15 million tonnes of transit through the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC).”
Umberto de Pretto also highlighted the port’s importance for member states of the Economic Cooperation Organization and the benefits of TIR as the only global and intermodal transit system to facilitate and secure trade corridors crossing Iran, particularly the INSTC corridor.
The recent reopening of Turkmenistan’s borders is another major opportunity for the region to further boost transport along north-south corridors, benefitting from the Bandar Abbas port’s potential and using the TIR system and its IT tools.
Trade digitalisation and cooperation
Iran is also moving towards trade digitalisation. Following eTIR pilot operations with Turkey (2015) and Azerbaijan (2019), IRU completed a digital TIR pilot project between Iran and India in September 2022, successfully testing the first digital intermodal container movement under TIR.
As the most secure and transparent international transit system, TIR could provide additional benefits to customs and the private sector.
“By implementing other facilitation solutions, such as establishing TIR green lanes at land borders and ports, as well as transferring customs clearance and formalities from borders to inland customs offices, we can further contribute to the increase of trade and transit in Iran,” said Umberto de Pretto.
“In this context, port authorities play a central role. Close cooperation and coordination between port authorities and customs will significantly expedite the release of containers, which would reduce port congestion and boost trade. IRU is ready to provide any technical support needed to establish such coordination between port and customs authorities to implement TIR,” he added.