Some Iranian banks can only handle food, medicine transactions: official
Tehran, Iran, Dec. 8
Some of the Iranian banks, including the European-Iranian Handelsbank AG can only handle food and medicine transactions, said Hamid Hosseini, head of Iran’s Oil, Gas and Petrochemical Products Exporters Union (OPEX) and chief of the Iran-Iraq Chamber of Commerce.
“The companies with the Off Exchange (OFEX) license can trade food and medicine and do financial transactions through four exempted banks,” Hosseini told Trend.
The Middle East Bank, Hekmat Iranian Bank, Mehr Iran Bank and Credit Institute for Development are the four Iranian banks that were not listed in the US sanctions.
“Private banks, including the Karafarin Bank and Tourism Bank still preserve relations with some banks. In the current situation, some banks can transact with Iran through SWIFT and they are transferring money,” he said.
“Some banks in Italy, Spain and Russia are still working with Iran,” he added.
“Over the last two years, Iraq has insisted to pay for Iran’s gas and electricity in dinar,” he said referring to Iraq’s payment of gas and electricity debts.
“Iraq has claimed all their oil revenues are in dollars and the European banks do not cooperate with them in exchanging the money to euro. Therefore, Iraq insists to pay in dinar,” he said.
“However, the National Iranian Gas Company and the electricity organization [Tavanir] have not accepted Iraq’s request. The last trip of an Iranian gas delegation to Iraq insisted that the country pay for its debts in euro.”
“Iraq’s electricity company has stated it cannot pay in dollar or other currencies like yen or yuan. Meanwhile, the negotiations continue, but due to the US pressure and near closure of Iranian dinar accounts, it is unlikely that Iraq continues to cooperate,” he said.