Russia offers $5bn credit line for new infrastructure in Iran

Russia plans to open a $5bn credit line to help finance infrastructure projects in Iran, according to reports.

"We hope we can open a $5 billion credit line," Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak told Iranian Telecommunications Minister Mahmoud Vaezi during a visit to Tehran, Iran’s ISNA news agency reported, according to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL).

Iranian Transportation Minister Abbas Akhoundi said after meeting Novak that "the Russians are going to allocate a credit line for infrastructure projects in Iran."

The first project would be electrifying the Garmsar-Incheh Borun train line connecting north central Iran to the northeastern border with Turkmenistan, at a cost of $1.2bn, Akhoundi told state television, according to RFE/RL.

Novak was accompanied by representatives from 50 Russian companies "ready to invest in Iran", he said.

Novak said bilateral trade between the two countries should rise from around $1bn now to $10bn, and asserted that Iran is Russia’s "most important economic and trade partner".

Photograph: Tehran, capital of Iran (Simisa/Wikimedia Commons)

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