Fortunately, the relative renown of the sweets and chocolate industry in Iranian market has resulted in a large part of the value chain of this industry from materials and packaging machines to distribution and sales facilities and human resources in Iranian market,
especially in the industrial groups that have been established in this field related to Iranian costumers in order to reach an acceptable level in Iranian market. In a normal and standard environment such as Iranian market, it would be hoped that this industry would be more profitable if it is in a competitive environment among Iranian costumers, Iranian market and foreign markets. The Iranian sweets and chocolate industry has based on the official statistics of the level of fourth value added in the food industry of the country and has been able to provide employment opportunities for more than 300 thousand people directly or indirectly in Iranian market.
Referring to global statistics and estimates, the market value of sweets and chocolates in the Middle East and Central Asia and North Africa is estimated at more than ten billion dollars, and Iran's share of this market is 5%, and given the vacant capacity existing, this ratio can rise to 20% for Iranian market.
When you have to worry about the industry in Iranian market, its raw materials are backed up with special subsidies and the cost of doing so will be kept low cost in Iranian market and Iranian industries. While the global price of wheat comes with lots of different values in Iranian market, as a result of flour production, as well as sugar and oil on the world market. The costs are way cheaper than its production in Iranian market. The comparison of world prices shows that these two can be supplied with a significant relative price difference for domestic producers.
The cocoa homeowner is also known to be a fully-fledged product supplied from West African farms, especially Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana, with its own difficulty and complexity. In the case of cocoa, there is a significant issue that will affect the future of this industry in the world and of course in Iranian market. The production capacity of this valuable agricultural product has not increased significantly as a result of increasing global consumption which affects Iranian market too. Building on that in the future, we will face increasing demand and supply shortages, resulting in rising cocoa prices in Iranian market. The Washington Post also reported that the rate of chocolate consumption in the world is higher than its production. Last year, more than 70,000 tons of chocolate were consumed and the role of Iranian market was more than 3% of the hole.
The bad weather conditions in Côte d'Ivoire, which produces 70% of cocoa in the world, have led to a decline in chocolate production worldwide. The increasing use of chocolate in the world, especially in Iranian market, China and India, will be another cause of the shortage of this substance. Regarding this fact this product plays a crucial role in the economies of its producing countries, it is unlikely that this restriction of production would become monopoly and limited in the supply and increase of market control by these countries, and even gradually move towards improvement. In-depth construction and completion of the value chain of cocoa-based products. Anyhow the first country plays the most important role in this scenario; we cannot neglect costumers and target markets such as Iranian market.
The top producers of these products in the world are countries such as the United States, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Netherlands, Argentina and Belgium, and if Iran wants to take a share in this great market, it needs to have a rational and intelligent program based on its relative and competitive advantages of the work which will be developed and implemented. Iranian market has huge capacity to be run just by cocoa for a period. In principle, what has been achieved by sanctions and stagnation so far has led to Iranian producers of sweets and chocolates in the international market has a competitive advantage and internally this is partly due to the protection of customs tariffs against imports in Iranian market and the global market.
As it was mentioned before, the history of this industry in Iranian market has led to the development of a remarkable human capital in the industry in Iranian market, and the transfer of experience to the merits and, of course, to a large extent spontaneously. However, I believe that industrialization requires such a large number of credible specialized training centers to develop the capacity and quality of human capital in Iranian market that it needs and should not be neglected in this regard especially in Iranian market. What should be given more attention in this industry for Iranian market is to support the establishment of research and development centers and to benefit from the scientific capacity and transfer of knowledge and technologies of the day by manufacturing enterprises which is essential for Iranian market and Iranian costumers. If this industry were to have a promising horizon, it would have to place itself at the forefront of innovation and Iranian customer orientation. Given the fact that the daily effects of foods on maintaining health and reducing diseases are more in the public's attention, and because of this, some sweets and chocolates are introduced as unhealthy or sometimes harmful foods, companies are working. They can manage the taste of consumers by creating new flavors. The R & D projects and leading companies have changed in the same way as the production of flavors and shaped products, as well as new and customer-friendly packaging to produce more healthy and nutritious products in Iranian market. This is the creation of the advantage that always keeps leading companies alive and makes it more difficult for companies to follow in Iranian market.