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Last Updated:[04-05-2010 23:36:04 EDT] Zoom in Zoom out Back to Tradenews

EU Members wish to Increase Trade with Iran

tradenews An Iranian official claimed most European countries were keen on engaging in trade with Iran devoid of political pressures and other bottlenecks. The likely reason for that opinion would be due to the reduction of EU members' trade with Iran except Austria has witnessed the space being exploited by BRIC as well as many Latin American and African countries.

Head of Iran's Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Mines Mohammad Nahavandian said "Europe's economy is seriously interested in the expansion of co-operation with Iran for different reasons, including energy security, but political obstacles have caused some problems."

Nahavandian observed that his country's effort to establish and strengthen relations through the chambers of different nations played a key role in the expansion of Tehran's ties with the European states. He also reminded that after the downturn despite political pressures, Iran has maintained and expanded its ties with many European companies, and also has developed relations with 40 chambers and joint councils of countries from different parts of the world.

It should be noted that in February, Nahavandian has said the West's sanctions against Iran has helped to expand trade with non-western countries. He is of the opinion that sanctions increase the economic costs not only to those under sanctions but also to those impose them.

Nahavandian claims are well corroborated by the open and tacit support Iran is getting from within Europe and rest of US. While most EU countries reduced commercial activities with Iran over the past year, Austria expanded them, and several German firms too continued to maintain trade.

Iran which has the world's second largest reserves of both oil and gas is facing US sanctions over its civilian nuclear program. However, the Iranian president Ahmadinejad' strong defence at the ongoing conference of signatories of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) is likely to weaken the US stance on any fresh sanctions against Iran. Ahmadinejad said that Washington has offered not "a single credible proof" that Iran was seeking nuclear weapons, and reiterated that Iran's intention was to produce nuclear power but not weapons.

By Jose Roy

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