The economic boost from the expected lifting of economic sanctions against Iran is leading the organizer of the world's largest plastics show, Germany's K Fair, to strike a partnership with Iran's biggest plastics show.
Messe Düsseldorf, which runs the K show, said it will organize international exhibitor participation in the Iran Plast fair, scheduled for April 13-17 in Tehran.
“The lifting of economic sanctions is expected to create a significant boost to international trade relations with Iran,” Messe Düsseldorf said. “Experts anticipate a rising demand for machinery and equipment, particularly for the plastics and rubber sector.
“[Iran] has a substantial backlog demand for investment goods, modern machinery, components, processing methods and expertise,” it said.
Messe Düsseldorf said the last edition of Iran Plast, in 2014, attracted 68,000 visitors and 800 exhibiting companies, including 250 from outside Iran.
It seems likely that the number of foreign visitors will rise, with other plastics industry groups pointing to increased demand in the country.
Euromap, the European Association of Plastics and Rubber Machinery Manufacturers, noted in statistics released earlier this month that world shipments of plastics and rubber machinery to Iran rose from 86 million euros ($96.1 million) in 2013 to 186 million euros ($207.9 million) last year.
That's still well below the levels of 2005, when the world sent 250 million euros ($279.4 million) in plastics and rubber machinery to Iran, but it's a significant turnaround from the previous two years.
“Iran is back in the game!” Euromap wrote in a presentation distributed at its Sept. 10 annual meeting in Italy.
Chinese equipment suppliers showed the biggest gain in sales to Iran, rising from 49 million euros ($54.7 million) in 2013 to 111 million euros ($124 million) last year, according to Euromap. In comparison, Euromap member companies reported sales into Iran rose from 31 million euros ($34.6 million) to 48 million euros ($53.6 million) in the same period.
A July report from the World Bank analyzing the economic impact of lifting the sanctions said it could pull the Iranian economy out of its two-year long recession, with at least $15 billion in additional oil revenues and $29 billion fairly immediately from the release of money previously frozen by the sanctions.
It also said foreign investment would double over the next few years, to about $3 billion per year, although it was likely to remain below its peak in 2003.