Financial Tribune

  • German firms, especially those without business links to the US, want to continue their Iran business.

    While Germany’s big banks are studiously avoiding Iran-related deals for fear of US reprisals, six credit unions, or Volksbanken, from southern Germany appear unafraid and are continuing to provide trade finance to the country. 
    Patrizia Melfi, the head of the International Competence Center that was set up by the banks to handle foreign business, told the German newspaper Handelsblatt that the supervisory board “gave us the green light on Thursday”.
    Days later, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo threatened to impose “the strongest sanctions in history” on Iran after the United States pulled out of the 2015 nuclear deal this month.
    Despite Washington’s hard line on Tehran, the center will keep handling transactions for companies that export goods and services to Iran. Their affairs will likely continue unimpeded until early August, when the United States’ new rules come into effect. For now, the US has yet to enact legally-binding sanctions. 

  • Iran is the world’s biggest saffron producer and accounts for more than 90% of the global production.

    Iran Mercantile Exchange launched saffron futures trading for the first time on Wednesday to develop the market for derivatives with new underlying assets.
    The futures' expiration date is set for Sept. 11. Each contract has 100 grams of premium saffron as its underlying asset with a 3% daily fluctuation cap set on its price.
    The first day had the futures open for trading at 12:30 p.m. with no fluctuation cap for 30 minutes to determine the initial price. The rest of the day, up until 15:30 p.m., had contracts trading with the usual caveats, IME reported on its website.
    Futures are financial contracts obligating the buyer to purchase an asset or the seller to sell an asset at a predetermined future date and price. The asset can be anything such as a physical commodity or a financial instrument. Futures contracts detail the quality and quantity of the underlying asset. They are standardized to facilitate trading on a futures exchange.

  • EU Eager to Avert New US Sanctions

    The European Union states have the political will to implement special mechanisms to avoid imposing the United States’ prospective sanctions against Iran after it pulled out of the nuclear deal that the world powers and Iran had concluded in July 2015, the Oil Ministry’s deputy for international affairs said.
    “The EU members want to continue their trade relationships with Iran based on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” Amirhossein Zamaninia was also quoted as saying by Shana, the Oil Ministry’s official news agency, on Tuesday.
    “These relations have relatively become normalized following the implementation of JCPOA and only some banking problems remain,” Zamaninia added.
    US President Donald Trump decided on May 8 to abandon JCPOA and reinstate sanctions that were in force before the international accord’s implementation more than two years ago. 

  • Iran’s Agriculture Beset by Lack of Cropping Patterns

    Water scarcity and low precipitation in Iran have impelled the government to take urgent measures, imposing a ban on the cultivation of certain water-intensive crops in different parts of the country. 
    A working group for managing water shortage was established last year to adopt a unified approach on managing water resources. 
    Notably, aggravated by erroneous farming methods, soil erosion is also taking a heavy toll on the environment. Experts are concerned that Iran’s agriculture may be at risk, as it endangers food security.
    Different administrations have tried, throughout the years, to come up with proper cropping or cultivation patterns to contain the damaging trends, and the lack of such patterns is perhaps felt more than ever in view of the above-mentioned pressing issues.  

  • US President Donald Trump (R) and South Korean President Moon Jae-in in the Oval Office, Washington on May 22

    The historic diplomatic encounter planned for three weeks from now between the US President...

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