Iran not to import wheat from Pakistan in exchange for exporting electricity

Business Materials 25 September 2013 18:55 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Sept.25/ Trend, R. Zamanov

Iran will not import wheat from Pakistan in exchange for electricity exports, the managing director of the Iran Power Generation Transmission & Distribution Management Company (TAVANIR) said on Wednesday.

"Electricity importing countries' debts to Iran currently stand at 600 million dollars," the Mehr News Agency quoted Homayoun Haeri as saying.

"Some 3.500 megawatts has been added to the country's electricity production capacity," Haeri said.

"Iran needs to add 5,000 megawatts to its production capacity each year," he added.

It was announced in March that Islamabad had authorized the export of 100,000 tons of wheat to Iran to settle debt from purchasing electricity for Pakistan's energy-starved border areas.

Pakistan's Commerce Ministry announced that the shipment of 100,000 tons was to have been delivered to Iran in mid-February but was delayed by preparations for Pakistan's May 11 election, Reuters reported.

"The wheat is being given to Iran against the outstanding payment of $53 million for electricity supplied to Pakistani border areas from the Iranian grid," ministry spokesman Mohammad Ashraf said.

"The interim cabinet has approved the decision and exports will be initiated as early as possible."

It is while the Plant Protection Organization of Iran said that it will not approve the quality and health of Pakistani and Indian wheat.

Some reports say that Iran is going to import wheat from Pakistan and India but the Plant Protection Organization will not approve the health of the mention countries' wheat, the ISNA News Agency quoted Ali Akbar Yasemi, an official with the organization, as saying.

Electricity from Iran costs Pakistan around $3 million a month and is supplied to towns near the Iranian border, including the port city of Gwadar.