IBIM Hopeful Of UK Collaboration
Iran is seeking foreign resources for financing its industrial and mining projects mainly because their low interest rates, the Iranian Bank of Industry and Mine’s CEO said Sunday on the sidelines of a visit to Tehran by a UK business delegation.
Ali Ashraf Afkhami, pointed to the UK’s interest in investing in Iran and said, “British companies have significant financial resources and offer modern services. Besides, there are many investment opportunities in Iran which interest both sides and inculcate them hope for expanding financial ties”, the bank’s official website quoted him as saying.
By financing industrial development, there would be a better chance for Iranian products to enter international markets and increase forex earnings, he said.
Afkhami noted that the lender, having a stellar performance in assisting industrial projects and creating jobs, could be a major player in helping raise foreign investments.
“However, attracting foreign investment is a complex procedure that demands financial and legal transparency.”
Ex-Envoy Heading Delegation
Sir Richard Dalton, the president of British Iranian Chamber of Commerce, also expressed his country’s interest in expanding cooperation especially in the auto industry.
Dalton, who served as Britain’s ambassador to Iran between 2003 -2006, referred to the UK Foreign Secretary Phillip Hammond’s recent visit to Tehran and welcomed the reopening of the British Embassy as a landmark event for fostering economic and financial relations between the two countries.
Pointing to Iran’s progress toward economic development and President Hassan Rouhani’s emphasis on economic growth, he announced London’s support in different areas such as oil and gas industries, petrochemicals and modern technology.
Hammond came to Iran in early August to reopen his embassy. He also paid a visit to the Central Bank of Iran and expressed interest in restoring banking and financial ties to Tehran.
Anglo-Iranian commercial relations in 2009 reached $2 billion, though after the imposition of international sanctions and closure of the British embassy, the figure dropped to a paltry $100 million a year.
Now both sides are hopeful about increasing two-way trade soon after the sanctions are lifted early next year.