TEHRAN, July 3 (Xinhua) -- Iran's non-oil trade with the nine members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) declined by 31 percent over the past Iranian year ending in March, 2018, local media reported Tuesday.
The non-oil trade between the two sides stood at 2.3 billion U.S. dollars, or 4.29 million tons, in the last Iranian year, which ended on March 20, the Financial Tribune daily reported.
The figures indicated a decline of 31.08 percent in value and a 22.77 percent drop in weight from the corresponding previous year, the report said.
The CIS consists of nine countries of Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus and Moldova.
Iran exported a total of 2.55 million tons of non-oil goods worth 1.34 billion dollars to these nine countries last year, while importing 1.74 million tons of goods worth 959.95 million U.S. dollars from the CIS nations.
Russia was Iran's biggest CIS trade partner followed by Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan.
The Iran-Russia trade stood at 1.03 billion dollars, or 1.91 million tons, during the past year, down by 42.14 and 21.83 percent, respectively, according to Iran's EghtesadOnline report,
Azerbaijan's non-oil trade with Iran stood at 351.14 million dollars, or 780,985 tons, down by 13.51 percent and 34.91 percent, respectively.
Iran's non-oil trade with Kazakhstan decreased by 46.76 percent and 41.86 percent in weight and value, respectively, to 550,145 tons and 234.69 million dollars.
Iran seeks to increase its trade with the CIS countries as a means to achieve economic cohesion with the area, Mohammad Reza Izadian, director of planning at Iran's Trade Promotion Organization said.
"We have been holding joint economic commissions with Russia, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Armenia and we are also pursuing preferential trade with the Eurasia region," Izadian said.
"One of the key topics which will help regional trade integration is the North-South corridor, through which we hope to see great development in export services," he added.
Currently under construction, the North-South Transport Corridor will connect Iran and Russia via Azerbaijan, providing road access for Indian Ocean countries to Europe and Central Asia.