Iran, Nicaragua to explore alternative financial channels to boost trade

The two countries kicked off bilateral trade ties officially back in when Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif disccussed political and economic relations with the Central American country. However, mutual trade isn’t very significant especially after the US sanctions.

19 March 2019
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The two countries kicked off bilateral trade ties officially back in when Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif disccussed political and economic relations with the Central American country. However, mutual trade isn’t very significant especially after the US sanctions.

Mohammad Reza Karbasi, Deputy for International Affairs at Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA), left middle, holds talks with Nicaraguan Ambassador to Iran Mario Antonio Barquero Baltodano at ICCIMA HQ in Tehran. (Photo: Iran Chamber Newsroom)

Iran and Nicaragua are seeking to find ways to ease banking ties and faster transit of goods in a bid to increase their bilateral annual trade.

Nicaraguan Ambassador to Iran Mario Antonio Barquero Baltodano discussed bilateral economic ties with Mohammad Reza Karbasi, Deputy for International Affairs at Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) at the entity’s headquarters in Tehran.

“Iran has been known for the quality of its engineering and technical services that have been exported to some Latin American countries,” said Karbasi, adding that his country’s engineering and construction companies are prepared to cooperate with Nicaraguan companies.  

He noted that Iranian engineering and technical expertise can be used in the Latam country’s agricultural sector to process raw products. “At the same time, Iran needs coffee, cotton and meat that Nicaragua exports,” Karbasi stressed.  

Iran needs to import red meat in a bid to meet the rising domestic demand. “Iran imported beef from many countries, but because of marine transit difficulties, the meat comes from neighbouring countries,” ICCIMA deputy for international affairs said, adding that Iran private sector is ready to authorise an entity to oversee the halal production of red meat in Nicaragua.

The Nicaraguan envoy hailed the quality of red meat produced in this Central American country, mentioning that there have been measures to produce halal meat as well. Barquero Baltadano urged Iran to copy Nicaragua-Mexico cooperation in setting up slaughterhouses and producing beef.  

Although the two countries are far apart, Tehran and Managua have been trying to increase their bilateral trade. Back in 2016, an Iranian business delegation visited the Central American country to see for itself investment and business opportunities in Nicaragua. However, those talks haven’t had any tangible result. “That’s why we ask Nicaragua Chamber of Commerce and Services (CCSN) to send a business delegation to Iran,” Karbasi requested.

The Nicaraguan envoy said that his country’s Foreign Minister Denis Moncada will travel to Iran 16 April leading a high political and business delegation. “We want that two countries private sectors hold talks so our bilateral trade is further facilitated,” Barquero Baltadano said, noting that delegation is expected to visit Iran Chamber of Commerce.   

Head of the Nicaraguan diplomatic mission in Tehran also called for mutual investment to boost mutual economic relations.

The Central American official also asked Iran to import soy and soybean meal from his country.

He also stressed that Iran can help Nicaragua in nanotechnology.

Reimposed US sanctions on Iran that came into effect last September and November have choked the country’s banking ties with nearly all world countries.  That’s why the two countries are thinking about new ways of financial dealings to keep their small trade afloat.

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