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Foreign trade

Petroleum dominates Iran’s exports, making up 85 percent of export earnings. In 2002 Iran exported 765 million barrels of crude oil per day. Major nonoil exports include carpets, chemicals, steel, fresh and dried fruits, nuts, and animal hides. The country’s leading purchasers are Japan, South Korea, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Italy, and China. Since the value of Iran’s imports generally is less than the value of its exports, the country maintained a favorable balance of trade for most years since the 1980s. Principal imports include machinery, transport equipment, chemicals, iron and steel, and food products. Primary suppliers of imports are Germany, South Korea, UAE, Italy, and France.Iran has had no direct trade with the United States since 1995, when the U.S. government banned all commercial and financial transactions between U.S. companies and Iranian public and private entities. The United States took this action because it believed Iran was planning to develop weapons of mass destruction and was supporting international terrorism. Iran is a member of the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Economic Cooperation Organization (an organization promoting economic and cultural cooperation among Islamic states).



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