Minister Hopeful Automakers Will Return to Iran

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A partial suspension of western sanctions against Iran was enough for major car makers to attend an automotive conference in Tehran, with many hoping Sanctions relief given to Iran in return for its agreement to suspend part of its nuclear program are not limited or reversible.

Minister Hopeful Automakers Will Return to Iran

“In the last few years due to the international sanctions Peugeot was forced to end its cooperation with Iran, but given the new decisions and, of course, as a result of the G5+1 negotiations with Iran, we hope that  the obstacles would be removed by the end of December and foreign firm start their cooperation with the Iranian automakers," said Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh, Iran's minister of industry.

Nematzadeh said that efforts will be made to expedite the process of cooperation between the Iranian and major foreign auto manufacturers, with emphasis on observation of the international standards.

“The foreign firms are very eager to establish ties with Iranian auto manufacturers and we intend to help further develop the country’s auto industry through such interactions,” he said.

He referred to his talks today with executives from Renault and Peugeot companies, saying that in the framework of strengthening interactions with the auto manufacturing companies, we also intend to strengthen our other industries.

Renault and PSA Peugeot Citroen are among western firms which have sent executives to an automotive conference in Tehran in a bid to reclaim their share in the Iranian car market a week after Iran secured a six-month easing of trade restrictions from the so-called G5+1 in Geneva.

Renault and Peugeot have been production partners of Iran’s domestic majors - Iran Khodro and SAIPA, but US pressure forced them to pull out of the country.

The conference in Tehran, planned before last weekend's Iran nuclear talks breakthrough, includes representatives of German, South Korean and Japanese manufacturers on its billing.

A day after the nuclear deal between Iran and the six countries, Peugeot’s shares soared 4.50 percent to 10.69 Euros and Renault rose 1.43 percent to 65.35 Euros.

On November 24, the six world powers, namely the US, Britain, Russia, France, China as well as Germany agreed  to a six-month suspension of trade sanctions on selected goods including auto parts to Iran in return for Tehran's decision to curb part of its nuclear activities for the duration of the deal.

The easing, due to start by late December or early January, is good news for the French, which until recently shipped semi-built cars to Iran as component "kits" for assembly by local partners Iran Khodro and SAIPA.

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