EghtesadOnline: Executives with Banque Delubac and Cie, an independent French lender, on Sunday met with representatives of Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture to discuss ways of improving ties.
TCCIM, a leading private sector entity, was represented among others by Bahman Eshqi, its secretary-general who invited the French bank to prepare the ground for expanding bilateral ties mainly through opening bank accounts for real and legal persons who boast membership at TCCIM.
“Considering the monetary and banking agreements reached between the governments of Iran and France in terms of establishing credit lines, another area of cooperation between Delubac and TCCIM can be employing credit lines for TCCIM member businesses and real persons,” he was quoted as saying by the official news portal of the chamber.
In late September, it was announced that Bpifrance, the country’s state investment bank, will finance projects of French companies in Iran from 2018, granting up to €500 million in annual credits, according to Financial Tribune.
“Excluding a force majeure case, we will be on their side in early 2018,” CEO Nicolas Dufourcq had said at the time.
In early February, Dufourcq said France will start offering euro-denominated credits and export guarantees to Iranian buyers of its goods later this year, a move to bolster trade while keeping it outside the reach of US sanctions.
During Sunday’s meeting, Eshqi also pointed to TCCIM’s Center of Investment and Consultancy Services and said it has currently identified several projects that require foreign investments.
He said many companies that are TCCIM members seek trustworthy European partners to invest in their projects, adding that finding prospective finance partners for these projects can be counted among one of the other potential areas of cooperation between TCCIM and Banque Delubac.
Speaking for the French bank, Denis Meilhon, chief executive of the Banque des Entreprises et Affacturage, one of Delubac’s five banks, welcomed Eshqi’s proposals for developing bilateral ties and said his bank is ready to open accounts for real and legal persons who are members of TCCIM.
“We are ready to open financial accounts after TCCIM introduces companies and usual due diligence is carried out,” he said.
The official also noted that many French firms are currently looking for ways to work with Iranian businesses and said Banque Delubac is ready to offer facilities to French companies wishing to enter Iran’s economic sectors.
At the end of the meeting, it was decided that after conducting further research for strengthening bilateral relations, both sides sign memorandums of understanding in the foreseeable future.
On Saturday, high-level executives with Delubac, including Meilhon, had met with their counterparts at Bank Melli Iran, the nation’s biggest bank to discuss the potential restoration of relations that were cut off after Iran was slapped with financial sanctions.
Meilhon favored the revival and expansion of banking relations with Iran and said, “We have also had negotiations with BMI officials in Paris about opening accounts.”