Envoy: S. Korea paying for Iran’s oil without using Western currencies

In an interview with the Tasnim News Agency, Kim Seung-ho said South Korea cannot use US dollar as a medium of exchange in trade with Iran, although the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), a lasting nuclear deal between Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany), has terminated all nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran.

“We cannot use the dollar before and after that (JCPOA),” he explained.

However, he added, while the use of other international currencies such as euro is allowed, major European banks still refrain from conducting trade transactions between Tehran and Seoul.

The Korean ambassador said only a few small European banks have recently started to work with Iran, “but major European banks do not move in dealing with euro transactions between our country and Iran.”

Complaining about the difficulties Korean merchants have to encounter because of the problems with dollar and euro, Kim called on Iran to “contact European banks and push them again to start our deals with Iran.”

The envoy explained that “since Korean traders can use neither dollar nor euro,” Seoul still employs a system that it used before the JCPOA came into force.

“Oil dollar will be put in Korean banks, and Korean exporters can withdraw the Korean money for their export,” he went on to say. “That kind of system will be maintained for the time being.”

Asked about any warning by the US against economic interactions with Iran or any intimidating messages, the ambassador said South Korea has not received such a thing up to now.

“Because our relations with Iran so far (have been) rather focused on economic and trade (cooperation), for the time being, our economic relations will be continued,” Kim noted.

In reply to a question about possible impacts of Seoul-Washington relations on cooperation with Iran and South Korea’s independent approach to ties with Iran, the ambassador said, “I think Korea does not worry about US attitude as far as Iran and Korea will extend their relations” in the areas that are not restricted by the international sanctions.

His comments came ahead of South Korean President Park Geun-hye’s visit to Iran, which is slated for May 1.

The Korean president will be accompanied by a big delegation of ministers, senior economic officials and business people, and more than 30 agreements are scheduled to be signed during her visit to Iran.

By Tasnim News Agency

Source Article from http://theiranproject.com/blog/2016/04/30/envoy-s-korea-paying-irans-oil-without-using-western-currencies/

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