Central Bank of Iran pays for medicines from assets at Swiss bank

Business Materials 31 January 2020 17:42 (UTC +04:00)
Central Bank of Iran pays for medicines from assets at Swiss bank

TEHRAN, Iran, Jan.31


A pilot transaction allowed a shipment of medicines worth about $2.5 million by a Swiss pharmaceutical company to Iran via a new payment mechanism for humanitarian assistance to Iran, said Governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI).

"The medicines were traded by the request of Swiss embassy and the financial resources were provided from CBI’s assets in a Swiss bank and via Swiss companies," said Abdolnaser Hemmati, Trend reports citing IRNA.

The Iranian official noted that implementing technical mechanism without possibility to transfer financial resources is not enough.

“If Americans really mean it when they say they support the supply of medicine and agricultural goods, they must establish a banking mechanism for transfer and supply of financial resources required for purchase of the basic goods,” Hemmati said.

The first transaction processed through the Swiss humanitarian channel, which has been under development since 2018, involved delivery of cancer and organ transplant drugs worth 2.3 million euros, according to the Swiss government.

The Swiss Humanitarian Trade Arrangement (SHTA) seeks to ensure that Swiss-based exporters and trading companies in the food, pharmaceutical and medical sectors can sell their products to Iran without violating the US Treasury sanctions, Aljazeera reported.

Food, medicines and other humanitarian supplies are exempt from sanctions that Washington re-imposed on Iran after the US exit from the international deal over Iran’s nuclear program in 2018.