Domestic Economy

Iran Trade Mission Lands in Sweden

Iran Trade Mission Lands in Sweden Iran Trade Mission Lands in Sweden

Accompanied by a delegation mostly comprised of private sector business representatives, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif arrived in Stockholm on Tuesday and attended the Swedish-Iranian Business Forum on Wednesday.

Sweden’s Minister for EU Affairs and Trade at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ann Linde and 230 economic business owners were also on hand for the meeting which aimed at strengthening mutual cooperation and weighing the two countries’ markets as well as business opportunities in Iran in the post-sanctions era.

The Sweden visit is the next-to-last leg of an EU tour the minister has undertaken to drum up business with the West following the lifting of western sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program earlier this year.

Iranians first stopped in Poland where, according to President of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture Mohsen Jalalpour, they met with representatives of as many as 180 Polish firms and bagged contracts worth $700 million.

“About $240 million of these contracts pertain to the power plant sector and $200 million to fisheries,” he said.

The two sides also discussed the possibility of a direct flight between Tehran and Warsaw to facilitate economic, cultural and tourism ties. “Iran Air and Polish Airlines have held negotiations, which we assume will come to fruition by February or March,” IRNA quoted Iran’s Ambassador to Poland Ramin Mehmanparast as saying.

Finland was the Iranian team's second destination in Europe. On Tuesday, more than 300 Finnish and Iranian economic figures converged on Helsinki’s Marina Congress Center to conduct one-on-one talks about potential trade projects between their respective countries. Bilateral banking relations took center-stage during this business forum.

According to Jalalpour, deals in the ballpark of $500 million were reached in Finland in the fields of industries, machinery and ICT.

Referring to banking as the main problem in the way of Iran’s international cooperation, Jalalpour said ICCIMA has proposed the idea of forming a task force comprising experts from the Central Bank of Iran and other banks to work out a solution to banking challenges.

Western sanctions against Iran were lifted on January 16 as the UN nuclear agency confirmed that the country had made good on its promise to limit the scope of its nuclear program.

Nonetheless, more than four months on, certain US sanctions still remain in place, which impede Iran's full integration into the global financial system.

The Iranian politico-economic mission is also expected to leave Stockholm for Riga in Latvia on Thursday.