CBI approves Afghan bank for opening branch in Chabahar

June 30, 2020 - 15:3

TEHRAN – Central Bank of Iran (CBI) has approved Afghanistan’s Ghazanfar Bank to open a branch in southeastern Chabahar Port, ILNA reported on Tuesday, quoting the head of Iran-Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce.

According to Hossein Salimi, the Afghan bank requested the establishment of a branch in Chabahar to facilitate trade between Iran and Afghanistan and the government has granted the bank its approval and necessary permits and licenses have been issued.

"Currently, we have some problems in transferring currency and trade with Afghanistan, and the establishment of this branch would be a great help to the trade exchanges between the two countries and can act as a financial channel,” Salimi added.

Noting that India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran would have a stronger trade relationship through this bank, the official said: "Fortunately, the port of Chabahar is exempted from the U.S. sanctions, and with the prosperity of the port, Afghan traders have become very active in this region.”

According to Salimi, the bank would provide service to both Iranian and Afghan companies which are active in bilateral trade between the two nations.

Last week, Iran’s Energy Minister Reza Ardakanian confirmed that an Afghan bank would open its branch in Chabahar Free Trade Zone soon. The minister, however, hadn’t named the bank.

Back in February, the Secretary-General of Iran-Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce Mozafar Alikhani had announced that two Afghan banks were to open branches in Chabahar.

Iran and Afghanistan have strong economic ties and many Afghan traders are familiar with the patterns of trade and consumption in Iran.

Afghanistan is a major export destination of Iranian products, and as Iran is seriously pursuing the objective of boosting non-oil exports to its neighbors, making the exporters acquainted with this country’s markets is an agenda.

EF/MA

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