EghtesadOnline: The Central Bank of Iran has made available $4 billion in foreign currency to importers of medicine and medical equipment in the last ten months.
This amount "is 2,000 times more than the value of Switzerland's recently-delivered cargo," the bank's governor said in response to the Iran-Swiss humanitarian trade channel launched last week, Financial Tribune reported.
"We do not wait for others decisions and measures when it comes to addressing vital needs like these [importing medicine]," CBI’s public relations office quoted Abdolnasser Hemmati as saying.
The senior banker recalled that the US administration under Donald Trump has done all it can to disrupt pharmaceutical imports into Iran after it pulled out of the landmark nuclear agreement the six world powers signed with Iran in 2015 and imposed tough penalties.
"Issuing a license for sending humanitarian goods to Iran exposes the US’ official contradictions," Hemmati noted. Elaborating his point further, he added, "There would indeed be no need for a (separate) license if export of humanitarian goods had been authorized" as senior officials in the White House love to claim in front of the international media.
The humanitarian channel to bring food and medicine to Iran has started trial operations, Reuters quoted the Swiss and US governments as saying on Thursday.
As a pilot transaction, an initial payment for the shipment of medicine to Iran by a Swiss pharmaceutical company was authorized on January 27. The shipment consists of cancer drugs and drugs required for organ transplant. The medicines are valued at approximately €2.3 million.
The Swiss ambassador in Tehran told reporters on Monday that the mechanism will be fully operation in two or three weeks, IRNA quoted him as saying.
Last week, Hemmati criticized Switzerland's payment mechanism for not covering bank transactions. "The humanitarian cargo was traded as per the Swiss government's request. Nearly $2.5 million of CBI money in a Swiss bank was used for buying the medications."
The Geneva-based bank BCP and Novartis reportedly took part in the pilot deal.
Highlight: It is obvious that there would be no need for a (separate) permission if export of humanitarian goods had been authorized as senior officials in the White House love to claim in front of the international media
Caption: The humanitarian channel to bring food and medicine to Iran started trial operations on Thursday.