Iran, China to double mutual investments next year
Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 11
By Rahim Zamanov - Trend:
Tehran and Beijing plan to double their investments in each other's economic sectors during the next Iranian calendar year (starts March 21, 2014), head of the Iran-China Joint Chamber of Commerce Assadollah Asgaroladi said, the IRIB News Agency reported on December 11.
"The two countries' trade turnover was around $27.5 billion in the first eight months of the current year (started March 21)," Asgaroladi said.
"We plan to increase the figure to $38 billion by the end of the year," he added.
"Increasing non-oil exports, boosting mutual investments and organising the banking issue are the three main goals of the Iran-China Chamber of Commerce and Industries," he said.
According to Asgaroladi, Iran exported $4.5 billion worth of non-oil goods to China in the first half of the current year.
"He hope the figure will reach $9 billion by the end of year," he explained.
"We have offered to buy shares in some Chinese banks," Asgaroladi said, adding that by doing so, this would help Iran bypass international sanctions' against the country's banking sector.
He went on to note that Tehran is considering buying the shares of some banks in other Southeast Asian countries as well.
Iranian media outlets reported on November 2 that Tehran and Beijing had reached an agreement to relax Iran's oil revenues which are blocked in Chinese banks.
Iran's Parliament (Majlis) Speaker Ali Larijani arrived in Beijing on October 29 for a four-day visit to discuss major economic issues.
Concurrent to his visit, Iran's Vice President Mohammad Bagher Nobakht said $22 billion worth of the country's assets had been blocked in China.
Ali Mohammad Ahmadi, a member of the Majlis Planning and Budget Committee, on November 2 told the Islamic Consultative Assembly's news agency that China will export capital equipment to Iran in exchange for the blocked amount of money. He also said that 40 joint projects have been introduced to Chinese investors.
Another Iranian MP, Hossein Sobhaninia, who accompanied Larijani on his trip to China, also told the Tasnim News Agency that the Chinese will finance $20 billion worth of Iranian projects in exchange for the blocked money.