According to Latifi, steel, and iron products accounted for the biggest share of Iran’s exports to its 23 African trade partners, comprising 51.5 percent of the total exports, IRNA reported.
During the mentioned month, Iran exported 29,602 tons of iron products worth $16,201,162 to Africa, the official said.
Urea fertilizer, food products, bitumen, chemical and plastic products, industrial machinery, flooring, sulfur, motorcycle tires, bentonite, white cement, plaster, medicine, toys, and glass containers were also among the other goods exported to the African continent in the said period.
During the first month of the current year, Iran also imported 4,329 tons of goods worth $5,879,482 from nine African countries, registering a 98 percent growth compared to the same period last year.
Latifi named Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya, and Sudan, as the main export destinations for Iranian products while, South Africa, Congo, Ghana, Kenya, and Tanzania were the first five countries exporting goods to Iran in the period under review.
In total, the Islamic Republic and Africa traded 75,407 tons of commodities worth $37.36 million in the mentioned month.
Latifi, who is the former spokesman of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA), previously said that following the 13th government’s policy of multilateralism and attention to new markets, especially in Asia and Africa, Iran's business relations with African countries have been on the path of growth.
The former Head of Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization (TPO) Alireza Peyman-Pak has also said the country is taking the necessary steps to increase annual trade exchanges with African countries to $5 billion by the Iranian calendar year 1404 (begins in March 2025).
Peyman-Pak said the trade with the mentioned countries is expected to reach $2.5 billion by the end of the current Iranian calendar year.
Referring to the preparation of the country's trade development roadmap at the beginning of the work of the 13th administration, the official said: "In this roadmap, major factors including exports and the share of different sectors are specified, and in the case of Africa, the priorities and targets for trade with different countries and the requirements for reaching these targets are determined."
Peyman-Pak put the share of African countries in Iran's export basket at $1.2 billion, saying: "Africa's annual imports amount to about $580 billion, and our share of this figure is still small despite all the efforts. We have managed to export $1.2 billion to this market."
He further mentioned the capacities of the mentioned continent for the export of technical and engineering services and said: "The total exports of technical and engineering services to Africa is currently $300 billion; But our share last year, despite a slight increase reached only $200 million, which is still small.”
According to the TPO head, in order to increase the level of trade with Africa certain infrastructure including transportation and direct shipping lines, as well as proper legal, commercial, monetary, and banking relations must be provided, and TPO has been recently focusing on providing such requirements to facilitate trade with Africa.
“To solve the transportation problems, four countries have been selected in East, West, South, and North of Africa, to launch air and shipping lines,” he said.