Economy, Business And Markets

Azerbaijan to Free Frozen Assets

Azerbaijan to Free Frozen AssetsAzerbaijan to Free Frozen Assets

The Iranian government is making headway in pursuit of its frozen overseas, following its agreement with the West that will remove economic sanctions against Tehran.

Azerbaijan will release Iran’s blocked assets worth $120 million, according to head of the Secretariat of Iran-Azerbaijan Trade and Economic Cooperation Commission, Mehdi Mohtashami.

“In a recent meeting with the Azeri delegation in Tehran, the two countries agreed to release part of $500 million of Iran’s frozen assets to be entered into mutual trade,” Mohtashami said in a meeting with traders of Ardabil Province.

Iran has asked the Azerbaijani government and Central Bank of Azerbaijan to return the frozen assets of Iranian entities remaining in Azerbaijani accounts.

Iran has over $100 billion of its assets frozen overseas. Most of the funds are oil revenues—Iran’s main export—but a portion belongs to Iranian companies.

The assets were frozen by sanctions engineered by the United States to limit Tehran’s nuclear energy program. However, the oil exporter and the P5+1—US, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany—signed a deal on July 14 that ended the 12-year nuclear dispute. The deal will remove economic sanctions in exchange for checks and balances on Tehran’s nuclear works. Now, Iran is seeking the release of its assets with the prospect of sanctions relief drawing close.

Iran is working to reestablish ties with economic partners. Gas swap to Nakhchivan, especially in the seasons of production increase and developing secondary deposits in Azerbaijan, establishment of a joint bank, increasing Iranian lender Bank Melli’s activities in Azerbaijan, joint investment and insurance and guaranteeing capital were among issues discussed between the two countries.

Furthermore, the Reserve Bank of India announced this week that it agreed to support Indian refiners to clear their outstanding dues for crude oil purchases worth $6.5 billion, media reported on Thursday. The decision came after Indian Finance Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi led a four-member delegation to Tehran to discuss modalities of clearing dues, last month.