Iran wants to trade with Russia in national currencies

TEHRAN, Apr. 01 (MNA) – Iran would like to conduct trade with Russia using the two countries' national currencies - the ruble and the toman, and agreements on this matter already exist, Iranian Central Bank Vice Governor Mohsen Karimi has said.

"The relevant agreements and opportunities already exist. Iran would like to use them to conduct trade operations with Russia in rubles and tomans," Karimi told Sputnik on Friday.

Trade turnover between Russia and Iran hit a new record in 2021, exceeding the equivalent of $4 billion, with Russian exports to Iran accounting for over $3 billion of this figure, and Russian imports from Iran reaching $967.3 million, a 21.4 percent jump compared to the year before.

During a two-day visit to Moscow in January, Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi said that the two countries had discussed monetary and banking issues, and agreed to remove trade barriers to increase trade to the equivalent of $10 billion a year.

"The two countries can take steps to break the dominance of the dollar over monetary and banking relations and trade with the national currency," Raeisi said during his visit.

Nearly 80 percent of trade between Russia and the Islamic Republic currently consists of agricultural products, with Russia exporting grains and oilseeds to Iran, and importing Iranian vegetables and fruits, dried fruits and nuts, which are valued for their high quality and lack of use of potentially harmful GMOs.

Russian officials have spent years negotiating with allies and partners on trade in national currencies. The crisis in relations with the West sparked by Moscow's military operation in Ukraine gave this development new impetous, with trade partners in Asia, Africa and Latin America tapped for discussions on the issue.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian confirmed their countries' mutual desire to strengthen cooperation in all areas, notwithstanding Western sanctions, on Wednesday after meeting in Tunxi, China.

ZZ/SPUTNIK

News Code 185248

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