European banks ready to join INSTEX: chief

TEHRAN, Sep. 18 (MNA) – A number of European banks and firms have expressed readiness to engage in Europe’s proposed financial channel, called INSTEX, which is aimed at helping Iran circumvent the US’ sanctions in its foreign trades, the new INSTEX president said on Tuesday.

"We have seen some requests from European companies such as one French firm that wishes to sell cattle to Iran,” Michael Bock said in a meeting with the representatives of the Iranian private sector in Tehran.

Bock added that some small Italian, German and French banks are also ready to take part in the mechanism to clear the barter trade.

INSTEX is a special-purpose vehicle established in January 2019 by France, Germany and the United Kingdom to facilitate non-dollar trade with Iran in a bid to bypass US sanctions.

So far, INSTEX has not become operational despite intense efforts on all sides.

The deputy caretaker for international affairs at Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (TCCIMA), Hesamoddin Hallaj, who was also present at the meeting, pointed to the France’s proposal of a $15 billion credit line for Iran, saying its necessary to implement the new bid as soon as possible.

He warned that if Europe fails to implement the mechanism faster, then Iranian businesses will be looking at eastern potentials.

According to him, the chamber of commerce is working on the goods that can be exchanged via barter as well as the Iranian companies that are prepared to take part in the process.

Bock welcomed the move, saying that Tehran Chamber of Commerce should later give the list to the Special Trade and Finance between Iran and the European Union (STFI), the Iranian counterpart to INSTEX.

Both sides agreed that companies and firms that want to join the channel need to be evaluated first.

MNA/IRN83479484

News Code 150185

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