Iran partly suspends sealing Turkish trucks’ fuel tanks

Business Materials 7 December 2014 15:27 (UTC +04:00)
Iran partly suspended sealing fuel tanks imposed on Turkish trucks coming in Iran
Iran partly suspends sealing Turkish trucks’ fuel tanks

Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 7

By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

Iran partly suspended sealing fuel tanks imposed on Turkish trucks coming in Iran, head of Transit Department at Iran's Road Maintenance and Transportation Organization (RMMTO), Mohammad Javad Atrchian said, the official IRNA news agency reported Dec. 7.

Atrchian said that the decision was made to decrease the number of the delayed Turkish trucks at the border checkpoint which currently hits 1500.

He said that Iran will permit the trucks which are not ready for sealing to enter Iran till Dec. 13. The trucks will be supplied with fuel for 85 cent euro in the country, he added.

He expressed hope that the Turkish side would make the necessary adjustments to resolve the problem.

The suspension decision was made after a Turkish delegation visited Tehran on Dec. 6 and held meetings with officials from Iran's Roads and Urban Development Ministry, as well as the Islamic Republic Customs administration to discuss the issue.

On Dec. 1, Iran started sealing fuel tanks of Turkish trucks on the border checkpoints to solve the dispute on the transit fees between the two countries, since fuel prices in Iran are much cheaper than in Turkey. Upon the decision Tehran stopped supplying Turkish trucks with its cheap fuel.

Iran and Turkey are at odds over truck transit fees. Over the past years, Iran has been charging a $750 transit fee for the trucks entering the country from Turkey, while the Iranian trucks were entering Turkey for free.

Following that Turkey imposed a similar fee on Iranian trucks. But the Islamic Republic increased the fee to $1,500 on October 10.

The Iranian officials said that under an agreement signed with Turkey a few decades ago, the two sides may charge a transit fee only if there is a difference in fuel prices in the two countries.

Although Turkish Transport, Maritime and Communication Minister Lutfi Elvan said that Turkey respects all agreements with Iran, adding that Tehran's response should be similar.

The twofold increase in transit fees for Turkish trucks entering Iran is illegal, the minister said.

The price of 1 liter of diesel fuel in Turkey is 2.12 TRY (the rate of $1 is equal to 2.26 TRY). In Iran, 1 liter of diesel fuel costs 2,500 IRR (the rate of $1 is equal to 26,900 IRR).

Umid Niayesh is Trend Agency's staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @UmidNiayesh