Iran in debt deal
October 3, 2000. (Financial Times) -- The Export Credit Guarantee Department
is to provide cover to help exporters compete for contracts in Iran following
an agreement to write off about £20m of Iranian debt.
Richard Caborn, the first trade minister to visit Iran since the 1979
Islamic revolution, said in Tehran on Monday: "The agreement says
effectively that Iran is open for business."
He said the Iranian government had agreed to repay a small amount of
pre-revolutionary debt owed to the ECGD. The original sum had been about
£100m but this was reduced to £24m during years of negotiations
that stalled three years ago.
ECGD cover brings Britain into line with its European competitors. The
absence of credit guarantees had been a serious deterrent to British companies.
Mr Caborn said exports to Iran amounted to £154m in the first
seven months of this year, putting Britain well down the European league
Foreign investors were looking for political stability, transparency
and the means to repatriate capital and profits, he added.