September 19, 2021 | auto

Over $1 billion of automotive trade between UK, Kurdistan Region has taken place: CEO

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - Automotive trade between the United Kingdom and the Kurdistan Region has reached more than one billion dollars, according to the CEO of Sardar Group, an automotive company.

“More than 1 billion dollars of economic trade between the United Kingdom and the Kurdistan Region have taken place … around 100 million dollars of vehicles are purchased by us annually,” said Sardar Bebany, who heads the leading automotive company in the Kurdistan Region. “That’s not including parts and accessories, or the vehicles purchased for Iraq,” he added.

The group, which employs more than 300 people in Kurdistan, is the first in the Region to sign a trade agreement with Jaguar Land Rover, Bebany told Rudaw.

“We have built a strong economic relationship with them, which has built up trust,” Bebany said.

Currently, Sardar Group has three branches in the Kurdistan Region and a fourth is slated to open in Erbil in the future.

“Seventy percent of our investments are in Kurdistan, even though our main branch is in Baghdad,” Bebany explained. “Iraq doesn’t have the same demand for luxury vehicles the way the Kurdistan Region does.”

“We have about 6,000 clients within the Kurdistan Region alone, not including our clients in Iraq,” he mentioned.

As part of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, Jaguar Land Rover has announced that they will become fully electric or hybrid by 2025. Bebany mentioned that the majority of cars imported into Iraq are hybrids, with vehicles manufactured to meet regional needs.

Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani was recently received in the UK on Wednesday to discuss the strengthening of trade and economic cooperation with Britain’s newly-appointed foreign secretary Liz Truss.

In 2020, a total of $675 million of goods were imported into Iraq from the UK.

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