American Carmakers May Enter  by Proxy
Economy, Auto

American Carmakers May Enter by Proxy

Three American automakers may find their way to Iran's car market under the aegis of an Italian brand, which is reportedly negotiating its way.

American carmakers are banned from developing any direct interaction and joint ventures with their Iranian counterparts due to the US-led economic sanctions imposed on the country because of its peaceful nuclear program in the past years, Fars News Agency reported.

Following the recent agreement between Iran and the six world powers on July 14, negotiations were held between Iranian and foreign car-manufacturing companies. Subsequently, three American car-production plants, namely Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep, voiced their readiness to launch production lines in Iran and started moves to enter Iran's lucrative car market through an Italian-American brand, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.

FCA, the world’s seventh-largest automaker, was established in 2014 by merging the Italian Fiat Group Automobiles and the American Chrysler LLC. It currently operates through two main subsidiaries: FCA Italy and FCA US, and manufactures many well-known automotive marquees, including the Italian Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Maserati, Ferrari Lancia and the American Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep.

The Italian Fiat Group has already held negotiations with the two Iranian giant automakers Iran Khodro Industrial Group (IKCO) and Saipa Group, since July 14 to resume operation in Iran.

According to the head of Iran-Italy Chamber of Commerce, Ahmad Pourfallah, IKCO and Fiat have been negotiating a deal for quite some time now.

In case, Iranian carmakers show a green light to Fiat, the three American cars may appear in Tehran's streets even before the sanctions are removed.

After the nuclear agreement, Iran has been inundated with offers by various European automotive companies. Offers have been presented not just in written proposals, but also through emails and phone calls.

Iranian Government Spokesman Mohammad Baqer Nobakht said his country is scrutinizing offers by foreign trade firms and states to select the best economic partners from among a pool of proposals, stressing that Tehran does not want to expand ties on the basis of imports.

"Mercedes-Benz has announced its readiness to buy 30 percent of the Iranian Diesel Engine Manufacturing stocks,” he said.

A high-ranking business and industrial delegation from Germany visited Iran recently to discuss ties with Iranian officials.

The 60-member delegation comprised representatives of German industrial companies, including Linde, Siemens, Mercedes-Daimler, Volkswagen, GIZ and tens of other German firms, and was headed by German Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel.


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