Iranian firm negotiates to reopen Mercedes-Benz production line in Tehran
Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct. 25/ Trend R.Zamanov
The Setare Iran Company is currently negotiating with Mercedes-Benz to reopen the German company's production line in Iran, the Managing Director of Setare Iran Company Seyyed Reza Hosseini said on Friday.
"The Iranian Top Khodro Company previously used to manufacture Mercedes-Benz sedan cars in Iran, but the production line is now at a halt. In the event of the negotiations succeeding and sanctions lifted, we can open the line," the Fars News Agency quoted Hosseini as saying.
"Iran Khodro Diesel was also active in the production of Mercedes-Benz models, especially the E-Class series in Iran," he said, adding that Iran is still the exclusive base for production of the German company's model in the Middle East.
It was announced on October 14 that Iranian Industry, Mines, and Trade Mohammad-Reza Nematzadeh has ordered major car manufacturers to increase the country's car output.
"The country's car output in the first half of the current calendar year (started March 21) faced a 44 per cent decrease compared to the same period in the previous year," the IRIB News Agency quoted Nematzadeh as saying.
"Iran's sedan car production in the previous year also faced a 45 per cent decrease compared to its preceding year," he said.
"The recent fall in the price of cars is in line with the country's goal to increase the output," he added.
"Last year for the first time after the Islamic revolution, the country's economic growth was negative. This means that people prefer to buy gold coin and foreign currencies instead of using their money for long term investments," Nematzadeh said.
Iran produced 291,638 cars in the first six months of the current Iranian calendar year which started on March 21, the ISNA News Agency reported.
Some 247,315 sedan cars, 40,629 pickup trucks, 3,485 trucks, 184 buses and 25 minibuses were produced in the country in the aforementioned period.
Iran produced 989,110 cars in 2012 which made the country Asia's eighth largest car manufacturer. The country also stood at the world's 18th place, the ISNA News Agency reported.
China, Japan, South Korea, India, Thailand, Turkey and Indonesia were Asia's seven largest car manufacturers.
Iran's automobile output faced a 40 per cent decrease in 2012. The country was Asia's fifth largest car manufacturer in 2011 with a total output of 1,648,505.
Increasing prices of raw materials and foreign currencies are the main problems the car manufacturers are facing.
The world's total car production stood at 84,141,209 cars in 2012 which is 5.3 per cent more than the preceding year.