Iran Economy Latest News 2012/11/20

_ Iran Begins Construction On $3 Billion Gas Pipeline To Syria (ECONOMY WATCH)

Iran has begun construction on a 225km pipeline that will take 20-25 million cubic meters of natural gas per day from the Persian Gulf to Syria via Iraq, reported the semi-official Fars News Agency on Monday.

The announcement came just after a pledge from Iran’s Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi, who had promised to do everything in his power to help the Syrian people and government restore peace and tranquillity to their country.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran will utilize its utmost capability and capability to help the Syrian people and government and help return calm and security to that country and the region,” Salehi said in a meeting with Ghanaian President’s special envoy Kodjo Tsikata in Tehran.

“This is the Syrian nation that should decide its fate and national sovereignty, and the Iranian government and nation only provide the grounds for meeting and dialogue between (Syrian) government and different groups,” he said, as cited by a separate Far News article.
But economist Saeed Leilaz, believed that the latest announcement was typical bluster from the Iranian government rather than an actual serious plan.
Turkish Development Minister Cevdet Yilmaz has said that his country is seeking to finalize a preferential trade agreement with Iran as soon as possible, IRNA reported.
In a meeting with a number of Iranian economic, political and cultural officials in Turkey, he said that Turkey wants free trade and investment with Iran.
He put the bilateral trade during the first 9 months of 2012 at around $18 billion, adding that the two sides plan to reach the value to $30 billion annually.
On June 1, delegations from Iran and Turkey made progress in finalizing the details of a preferential trade agreement between the two countries.
Kawa Ali is a Kurdish businessman who has some business ideas in mind. He has recently discussed the regional political and economical situation with his trader friends in order to make his mind up.Following economic inflation and reducing value of Iranian Rial, Kurdish businessmen want to seize the opportunity to purchase houses and trade towers in the Kurdish areas in Iran.”I want to go to the main Kurdish cities in Iran to buy trade towers and some houses. I do hope that I benefit from this business, especially, in case the current Iranian government collapses.”

He added that distributing the country into smaller parts is a great possibility if the situation deteriorates in the future.

Sanctions against Iran will hit the economy, but not oil output according to the IEA.
Iranian oil output rose in October after seven months of decline due to Western sanctions and its exports rebounded strongly as China and South Korea bought more oil, the West’ energy watchdog said.
The International Energy Agency (IEA), adviser to industrialised nations on energy policy, said the rebound in Iranian output was adding to a bearish picture of growing oil supply while demand remained depressed due to a weak global economy. The IEA also added that a new round of sanctions against Iran was likely to further cripple its finances although not necessarily further reduce its oil deliveries to markets.“With the bulk of Iranian crude now heading to Asia, however, the main impact of the new EU measures will likely be on the country’s financial sector,” the IEA said. Iran’s finances have been drastically stretched since US and EU sanctions more than halved its oil exports compared to last year, undermining its budget and leading to a spike in inflation and a sharp weakening of its currency. The sanctions are part of a stand-off between the West and Iran over Islamic Republic’s nuclear programme.
Iran is not yet a member of WTO. It has a strict regulatory trade regime. Importers and exporters need to obtain licenses from their Ministry of Commerce before entering into business contract with international buyers and suppliers. Commercial section Tehran has revealed that Iranian Government has imposed a ban on import/ release of fruits including Kinnow from Pakistan. The ban is a violation of Pak-Iran PTA. The matter has been taken up with Iranian authorities through diplomatic channels but no response has been received. The Federation of International Transport companies of Pakistan has revealed that Pakistani transporters are being charged by Iranian authorities for the following:Visa Fee:Iranian authorities are charging visa fee from Pakistani drivers and business community @ Rs 13750/- as compared to Pakistani visa fee of Rs 2750/ – being charged by Pakistan from Iranian nationals. The amount of visa fee is for six months & visa is cancelled any time by Iranian authorities without assigning any reason.

Road Tax:Iranian government charges one dollar for every three kilometer from Pakistani vehicles as road tax, where as no such tax is levied by Pakistani authorities on the Iranian vehicles which enter Pakistan.

Load Tax:Iranian Government charges 10% on carriage fare from Pakistani vehicles whereas no such tax is charged by Pakistani authorities on the load of Iranian vehicles.

Pakistan signed a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) with Iran on 4th March 2004 which became operational from 1st September 2006. Under the PTA Pakistan has granted tariff concessions to Iran on 338 tariff lines, while Iran has granted tariff concessions on 309 tariff lines. Average tariff concessions are around 18%.

The western sanctions against Iran have had dire consequences for Armenia, including an acute shortage of food and agricultural products in the country, Fars news agency reported.

According to a report by the Armenian MIR TV, the western sanctions have caused a halt in the supply of polymeric raw material from Iran to Armenia for the past two weeks, which entails negative consequences for the country’s agricultural sector and processing industry.
The report also said that tens of companies and factories in Armenia were shut down due to the shortage of raw materials which were imported from Iran. Meanwhile, exporting these products from other countries will take about 30-40 days, which will likely result in a hike in prices and lower quality.
Also, Armenia is faced with a shortage of sulfuric acid and caustic materials used for water purification due to the western sanctions against Iran, added the report.

 Chairman Senate Sayyed Nayyer Hussain Bokhari on Monday said that the exchange of Parliamentary delegations as well as people to people contacts will definitely strengthen our relations further along with cultivating common interests between Pakistan and Iran. He was expressing these views in meeting with Hossein Sadiq Aabedeen, Governor General of Fars Province, of Iran and his delegation here at Parliament House.

Nayyar Bukhari said that Pakistan highly values its fraternal ties with Iran as our relations are rooted deeply in our historical, cultural and religious commonalities and we also share commonalities of views on various regional and international issues.

The Chairman appreciated Iran’s timely assistance at difficult times to Pakistan. He appreciated, “whether it is 1965 war or earthquake or flood, our Iranian brethren have always stood by their Pakistani brothers in time of need”.

He said that the visit of Iranian delegation will definitely enhance our political, social and economic relations.


Iran is ready for new talks with global powers on its nuclear programme but the United States and others seeking to rein in its uranium enrichment activities must be more constructive, Tehran’s ambassador to Russia said on Monday.

Barack Obama’s re-election has increased the chances of a revival of talks between iran and six powers, but the envoy said the U.S. president should “change the conduct of the United States as regards iran and choose a more logical approach.”

Ambassador Reza Sajjadi said senior iranian officials had conveyed Tehran’s preparedness for new negotiations to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov last week, but his remarks appeared to set a firm tone for any new round.

“We hope that in the next talks, the six nations – instead of (applying) a double standard, would approach these talks more constructively,” Sajjadi told a news conference, speaking though an interpreter.

Three rounds of talks since April have failed to resolve the long dispute over iran’s nuclear programme, which Western powers say is aimed at developing a nuclear weapons capability. iran denies this, saying its programme is for peaceful energy only.

But neither side has been willing to abandon dialogue, in part because a total breakdown could heighten the risk of Israel bombing iranian nuclear facilities, potentially igniting a new war in the Middle East.


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