TEHRAN, Iran—German plastics and rubber machinery association VDMA has voiced its confidence in the Iranian market as 46 German suppliers attended the Iranplast rubber & plastics show in Tehran Sept. 24-26.
The association said in a statement that German machinery suppliers had "good reasons" to be optimistic about Iranplast, including "the easing of the sanctions and the increasing opening of the country [to foreign investors]."
In the first half of 2017, German machinery exports to Iran rose by 140 percent to $26.9 million, compared to the first six months of 2016 which saw $11 million worth of export to the country.
VDMA noted that within the first six months of 2016, sanctions already had been eased against Iran.
"The mere market forecasts suggest further growth," explains Thorsten Kuehmann, managing director of the VDMA plastics and rubber machinery association.
"However, we are also familiar with the ongoing problems," said Kuehmann.
According to the official, political conditions remain difficult in the country while financial facilities are insufficient.
Iran's market potential could also be seen by the levels of Chinese exports to the country.
According to VDMA figures, in 2016, China exported $175.6 million worth of plastics and rubber machinery, up 15.2 percent from the previous year.
China led the table of suppliers to Iran, followed by Germany last year.
"Under the given general conditions and the expectation that the Iranian market is developing slowly but surely, the German plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers overall look optimistically into the future," VDMA said.
Since 2015, the VDMA has organized an Iran Management Meeting for its members.
According to the association, this year about 20 member companies of the VDMA met in the run-up to the Iranplast to exchange information on the future topics Industry 4.0 and circular economy.