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Iran's Samand heading to Turkey


TEHRAN, Oct. 10 (Mehr News Agency) - Samand export to Turkey still holds several 'glitches' which may hopefully be resolved in a meeting between Iran's foreign and Turkish trade ministers after Ramadan, deputy director of exports at Iran Khodro Company (IKCO) noted on Tuesday.

Speaking at a press conference, Alireza Mirzaii continued that the sedan car, Samand, has already met Turkey's standards and after-sale services, unlike what some believe, will be of no concern, the Persian service of ISNA reported.

"The Turks argue that 'how would it be' the auto import taxes are 90% in Iran while Turkey asks for 10 percent," the deputy stated, fencing off the 'rumors' about IKCO's role in 'disruption' of Megan, by Renault, import to Iran as acknowledging the news that the government has obstructed Megan deal in order to remove the obstacles on Samand's shipment to the neighboring country.

"Exports to the distant countries only carry political undertones and the IKCO tries not to get involved in loss-making ventures. Unfortunately playing politics supersedes business with the regional states and we go after the markets that require days in air travel," Mirzaii answered ISNA's question on the logic behind delivering a car to a place like Venezuela where the shipping cost calls for $3,000 at least.

Nevertheless, the company seeks certain privileges or discounts where our national interests want us to be. "It ought to be kept in mind that we established a Samand assembly line in Syria recently but some adjustments had to be made in production line warding off sudden 250% to 40% nosedive in auto import tariffs put into effect by the Syrian government."

"When we expressed our concern to the Syrian economic minister, he simply retorted he could not sacrifice his country for a $20m investment," he stipulated.

The IKCO is going to target CIS (Commonwealth Independent States) in future by supplying them from Azerbaijan and Belarus plants and new production lines are to be established in Venezuela, Senegal and China soon.

The Iranian giant plans to increase its export to 250,000 Samands in the region and worldwide by 2010 while many experts believe the figure is 'unrealistic' in the face of the nation's current shipping capacity -air, sea and ground- of 50,000 units.

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