Huge optimism surrounding auto possibilities if Iran sanctions lifted

Huge optimism surrounding auto possibilities if Iran sanctions lifted

Iranian business organisations involved with promoting Scandinavian component manufacturers say they are confident President Barack Obama can use his veto if necessary to ensure this week's news of sanctions being conditionally lifted against Tehran, is made binding.

Iran has endured decades of severe economic sanctions imposed by a West nervous Tehran is seeking to enrich uranium with a view to developing nuclear weapons, but marathon talks in Vienna finally thrashed out a deal yesterday (14 July), which could see the country come in from the cold.

The tentative agreement however, has yet to pass a sceptical US Congress, with many hawkish Republicans possibly ready to try and scupper the deal, although President Obama has already dropped heavy hints he will veto that possibility.

"Absolutely this is good news for both the people in the country [Iran] and the economy," Scandinavian Iranian Chamber of Commerce (SICC), chairman, Reza Khelili-Dylami told just-auto from Stockholm.

"The US has 60 days and this must go [to the] US Congress and they must say yes or no. We hope this will be a yes, we need that, Iran and other countries.

"With the Iranian Congress, we don't have any problem. [President] Khamenei says yes, everybody must say 100% sure. American Congress, we don't know. Mr Obama has [a] problem to do that but he has [a] little power - he has a veto."

Three months ago, SICC in conjunction with Scandinavian supplier association, FKG, organised a highly successful visit to Iran, with estimates putting the country at a 2.5m or 3m market if sanctions are lifted.

Iran has already benefited from a partial easing of trade restrictions by Western countries, with FKG echoing comments made by automaker, Saipa to just-auto suggesting the market could more than double in size.

"We had two telephone calls yesterday after the nuclear talks in Vienna," said Khelili-Dylami. "These company [ies] called me from automotive, who wanted to buy components for cars.

"It was an Iranian company which called wanting to buy Swedish components. There is so much business in this short term."

One of the prime stumbling blocks to undertaking business in Iran for overseas suppliers has been access to finance, but the SICC is confident this too, will be overcome now the sanctions dam appears to have been breached.

French supplier body, FIEV has already led its own component manufacturer delegation to Iran and fellow-country automakers PSA Peugeot Citroen and Renault, both with long associations with Tehran, are sure to be looking to increase business opportunities with the country.