Like other countries, the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran publishes a list of products that are banned to be imported into the country. Based on the law and general policies of Iran regarding the development and support of domestic products and also to fight back against sanctions, the list has included more products in recent years. The latest version of the list of banned products was published in such a way that almost 2,500 items were included as products that are banned to be exported to Iran. So according to the list, it is important for importers and foreign investors to consider the prohibition law that forbids product import to Iran. One of the biggest challenges in all businesses is the lack of knowledge of legal issues and related laws in corporations. This issue, specifically in the field of International trade may bring serious danger to people or companies. By having a successful experience and employing specialized experts, GTG trading company can perform import and export procedures in the best possible manner and guarantee to undertake your legal matters. To get familiar with our field of activity at GTG trading company and for professional consultation about International trade, stay in touch with us. To learn about the list of banned products and import-export laws and regulations in Iran, keep reading the rest of the article.
The pros and cons of prohibition of product import to Iran
A great number of experts believe that legislating a law that prohibits product exports to Iran is good for the country’s economy and they also do believe that such a law helps the country to take a step toward domestic production which brings about economic prosperity. However, some people believe that forbidding some products to be exported to Iran can indirectly cause an economic recession, do harm to the gross national product (GNP) and increase the smuggling of goods to the country.
However, according to the statistics of the Ministry of Industry, Mine and Trade in Iran, prohibiting the import of 2,500 unnecessary products, specifically prohibiting the import of products from group 4 and restricting the import of 722 items has saved Iran 5.8 billion dollars within a year and has increased gross national product.
Categorization of goods that are prohibited to be exported to Iran
Generally speaking, the most important products that are prohibited to be exported to Iran are as follows:
1. Clothing and Textiles
According to the head of the clothing and textiles trade union of Iran, by putting the import prohibition law of Iran into practice “there has been 70 % phenomenal growth in cloth production in the first 7 months of 2020 compared with 2019.” Nonetheless, putting a ban on the export of products to Iran has had a negative impact such as increasing product smuggling and decreasing textile raw materials for producers inside Iran.
According to Iran customs statistics, the most important clothing and textiles items that are prohibited to be imported to the country include 16 subgroups such as fabric, black veil/ chador, flag, nylon, all sorts of shoes, blankets, carpets, rugs, moquette, machine made rugs, cotton fabric, synthetic fabric, wool fabric, fastoni fabric, sack, cotton threads, hydrophilic fiber, polyester fibers, polypropylene, and filament.
2. Domestic appliances
According to the export prohibition law in Iran, the import of some domestic products such as home appliances is prohibited. Prohibiting the import of products that are similar to domestic products as well as preventing the import of illegal products (smuggling) has made Iran grow by 46% in the production of home appliances in 2020 and also has made Iran reach its maximum production capacity which is estimated to be 20 million appliances.
Domestic appliances can be divided into 3 sections such as home appliances, other metal appliances, heating appliances, air conditioners and cooler appliances, and all sorts of pipes and metal fittings.
Here are the most important products of home appliances subgroups that are banned to be imported into the country:
1. Refrigerators and freezers
2. All sorts of gas stoves, ovens, and microwaves
3. All sorts of cooling systems, heaters, and water heaters
4. All sorts of human and animal grooming machines
5. All sorts of televisions, TV, and radio receivers
6. All sorts of washing machines and dishwashers.
The reason to prohibit product export to Iran, specifically luxurious products such as automobiles is to help domestic production grow and prosper. Currently, SAIPA and Iran Khodro are the main car manufacturers in Iran, and there is an exclusive competition between the products of these two brands in the car market in the country. Currently, the product of these two brands is exported to different countries in the world.
Here are the most important products of automobile subgroups that are banned to be imported into the country:
1. Light and heavy cars
4. Industrial apparatus for road, air, railway, and sea construction
5. Fire fighting vehicles and tankers
4. Leather products
Being in the industry for a long period of time and having large companies with a wide range of products has made Iran have one of the highest quality leather in the world which has many fans in many countries specifically Asian countries. However, the abnormal import of foreign synthetic leather has affected domestic production of leather to a large extent.
Therefore, to support domestic production and increase foreign currency income, the import of leather products has also been banned in the export law of Iran. According to this law, the import of all sorts of leather products such as belts and ornaments, and all sorts of leather bags and shoes are forbidden.
5. Cosmetics and hygiene products
It is noteworthy that from 2018 up to now, the import of cosmetics and hygiene products has been completely prohibited. So it’s not possible to register the import of this product with 33030090 and 33059010 tariff numbers. But why is there an import prohibition? Interestingly enough, cosmetics is one of the most favored products in the import field in Iran and this product has been always well-liked by the people of the country. This has caused a massive capital outflow from Iran and has put a lot of pressure on domestic producers. So the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has decided to enact a law to prohibit the import of cosmetic products to the country.
The decision has had some consequences for the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Some significant disadvantages of this law are the increase in smuggling, and losses of traders, businessmen, and advocates of this industry. Is there any exception to this law? What products are allowed to be exported to Iran? If you have any questions about the law that prohibit the import of cosmetics and hygiene products to Iran, contact GTG.
6. Dairy products and foods
Currently, there are more than 400 brands and factories that are professionally active in the dairy industry in Iran. It is interesting to know that from this vastness, 85% of Iran’s dairy industry is run by private sector investment and direct management, and the other 15 % is totally run by the non-governmental sector.
Due to its high potential to produce a large number of dairy products, such products are prohibited to be imported into Iran. In the previous year, Iran could earn a revenue equal to $780 million dollars from the import of dairy products and foods in competition with rival countries such as Turkey and Arab countries.
The most important products of this category are as follows:
1. Organic honey
2. Milk and milk products
4. Wheat, wheat flour, and wheat starch
5. All sorts of (cooking) oil
6. Sea foods such as fish, shrimp, and caviar
7. Tomato paste
8. All sorts of fruits
7. Technology Equipment
Iran has banned the import of many technology equipment. However, this does not include products such as cellphones, tablets, laptops, and computer systems that end users make use of them, and actually, it includes the import of specialized equipment.
According to the list, the banned products include Next-Generation Networks (NGN), switches and routers, telecommunications antennas, Passive Optical networks (PON), data cable or wireless modems, IP phones, Passive Radio and Optical Components, telecommunication cables, and Storage Area Networks (SANs).
8. Products of the metal industry
Products of the metal industry are the 8th item on the list of banned products that are forbidden to be imported to Iran. Such products are categorized into 6 subgroups. Zinc and lead, pellet, direct reduced iron /sponge iron, copper products, raw steel, and aluminum, are the six subgroups of products that are prohibited to be imported to Iran.
9. Products of the machine industry
The 9th item on the list belongs to products of the machine industry. The import of all sorts of packaging equipment, machine tools, all sorts of furnaces, elevators and escalators, agricultural machinery, production line machines, heat exchangers, power plant and greenhouse equipment are products of the machine industry that are severely banned.
10. Products of the construction industry
The last item on the list of banned products to Iran which will be looked at in this article is the subgroup of construction products. Products such as all sorts of clay soils, marble, travertine, gypsum, lime, clinker, cement, copper concentrate, copper and lead ore are prohibited to be imported to Iran.
The most important products that are permanently banned to be imported to Iran
Besides the 10 categories of banned products to Iran that were explained, the Islamic Republic of Iran has permanently put many items on the list of banned products due to religious, social, and political reasons.
For example, narcotic products such as opium, and all sorts of alcoholic drinks like vodka, beer, wine, liqueurs, and cordials are mentioned as banned products that cannot be exported to Iran. Keep in mind that people were banned from using these products after Iranian Revolution and they were also prohibited to be imported to Iran.
Interestingly enough, besides alcoholic drinks and narcotics, the import of products such as pig oil and pork, crab, octopus, and lobster are prohibited because based on Islamic law they are haram (forbidden), so they are permanently banned to be imported.
In this article from the GTG Trade website, we’ve done our best to provide all the information you needed to know about the products that are banned to be imported by the Islamic Republic of Iran. Hopefully, you have found this article practical and we hope that this article will help your business with the Islamic Republic of Iran. If you need more information about doing business with Iran, specifically through exporting products to the country and also need professional consultation about Iran’s market or the products that are banned to be imported to Iran, contact our experts at GTG.