November 14, 2018 14:48
News ID: 3373

(Persia Digest) – After the imposition of new US sanctions, Iranian pharmaceutical companies have been faced with severe obstacles in transferring money for the procurement of some raw materials for specialty drugs.

With the start of new US unilateral sanctions against Iran on 4 November, one of the important issues faced concerns pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, food, and agricultural products. Of course, US officials and Mike Pompeo have continuously announced that their country has not sanctioned any of the above.

But Iran’s top diplomat has provided documents showing that four pharmaceutical companies – Roquette, JRS Pharma, Recordati Industria Chimica e Farmaceutica S.p.A., and Getinge – have announced to a number of Iranian pharmaceutical companies, including Alborz Darou, that they are unable to work with Iranian companies due to the current diplomatic situation.

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In an interview with Persia Digest (PD), the Spokesperson for Iran’s Ministry of Health, Iraj Harirchi, confirmed the documents provided by Javad Zarif, and said: “Two issues cause problems for pharmaceuticals under sanctions. One is reduced foreign currency available to various industries in the country, and the other is limitations in conducting trade in foreign currencies.”

He reiterated: “When SWIFT is closed to Iran by the US, we encounter difficulties in importing any goods, including food and medicine. There is also a rise in the cost of dealing in foreign currencies under sanctions.”

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He said the US aimed to change the behavior of the Iranian people, weakening their relationship with the government, and ultimately regime change. He added: “Despite what the US officials claim, they have directly targeted people’s health and livelihoods, including food and medicine. Presently, both Iranian and foreign pharmaceutical companies have encountered problems. In addition to financial transactions, it also includes raw materials for medicine.”

An official from the Commercial Department of Behbod Darou who wanted to remain anonymous also told PD: “All Iranian pharmaceutical companies, whether manufacturers or importers, are encountering difficulties due to sanctions. Behbod Darou is also having problems with money transfers and exchanges with foreign sellers which has affected our routine transactions.”

An official from the Commercial Department of Kimi Darou also spoke to PD, saying: “It depends on the type of medicine; problems are being encountered most in specialty drugs. We hope this will be resolved soon as per promises made.”

Given this solid evidence, Mike Pompeo’s claims can only have three meanings – either the information given to him is not correct, he is pleading ignorance, or is blatantly lying.

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