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January 03, 2014

Western Businesses Rush to Iran


On November 14, 2013 National Public Radio's On Point news discussion program hosted a discussion about the proposed agreement with Iran over its nuclear program that was worked out in Geneva. Mark Dubowitz of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, an opponent of the agreement, warned that any relaxation in sanctions would result in a stream of Western companies rushing in to do business with Iran. But the other participants in the program supported the plan. Suzanne Maloney of the Brookings Institute scoffed at Dubowitz's warning, calling it "an absurd assertion." NPR host Tom Ashbrook shared Maloney's assessment and was noticeably annoyed by Dubowitz's skepticism about the proposed accord, interrupting him several times.

On Jan. 2, the German news magazine, Der Spiegel, weighed in with a long piece," 'Chance of a Century': International Investors Flock to Tehran", reporting that "droves of Western business people are already flocking to Tehran." The article's author, Suzanne Koelbl, repeats what the head of the German-Iranian Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Tehran told her:

Not a single top European official came to President Rohani's inauguration, as agreed by the EU member states' representatives in Brussels. But the very next day the government in Rome sent a high-ranking emissary to personally congratulate the new Iranian head of state. Now the planes from Europe are "full of Italians" ...

In a deal worth billions, the French are about to renew their licensing contract for supplying Peugeot conponents to Iranian carmaker Iran Khodro. "And the Americans are already here with ExxonMobil, Chevron Corporation and other US companies"...

The German chamber of commerce official admits, "This here is not a matter of good and evil, or perhaps even the nuclear deal. It's really about a great deal of money."

Posted by SS at January 3, 2014 12:25 PM


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