Russia to benefit from relations with Iran regardless of nuclear talks outcome

Tehran, Iran, June 23

By Mehdi Sepahvand - Trend:

There are benefits for Russia in both probabilities that may happen to the Iranian nuclear talks, Russian affairs expert Shoeib Bahman told Trend June 23.

He said Russia would benefit from relations with Iran if the nuclear talks fail to reach a comprehensive deal.

Russia in that case will have the chance to be the big partner with Iran especially in technology trade, he said.

Iran and the group P5+1 (the US, UK, France, Russia, China, and Germany) are holding talks over Tehran 's nuclear program.

The talks are scheduled to lead to a final deal by June 30.

However, Bahman added, if sanctions are lifted, there will still be benefits for Russia, maybe even more so.

In that case, Russia will have the chance to conduct more economic cooperation with Iran since Iran will be freed from economic sanctions, he stated.

Iran's number one aim of the nuclear talks is to lift the sanctions that have badly damaged its economy.

Iran-Russia trade turnover was about $2.3 billion in pre-sanction period. The Islamic Republic imported $1.76 billion worth of goods from Moscow in 2011, meanwhile the country's exports to Russia accounted for about $500 million.

Iran-Russia trade turnover witnessed a significant fall during the Iranian calendar month of Farvardin, which fell on March 21 to April 21. Russia exported 52,200 metric tons of goods worth $21.7 million to Iran during the period.

Russia exports to Iran registered a decline of 31.3 percent and 21.12 percent in terms of value and volume respectively compared to the same period of last year.

Traditionally, there has been the concern that if Iran 's relations with the West grow, Russia will lose its place, the expert admitted. But, he said, at least at the level of the two countries' leaders, there has always been a willingness to keep in good relations.

Asked about his opinion about Russia 's approach to the Iranian nuclear talks, Bahman said that Moscow has always left a good impression by trying to contribute to successful talks. Although, direct Tehran-Washington talks, which began last year, have deprived Russia of its mediatory role that it used to play in the Iran-West standoff, he observed.

Edited by CN

Follow the author on Twitter @mehdisepahvand

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