Mercedes, Iran Khodro to sign deal ‘soon’
Iran Khodro and German automaker Mercedes-Benz will sign a deal soon for production of cars and commercial vehicles, the head of the leading Iranian vehicle manufacturer says.
Hashem Yekke-Zare said Daimler AG’s unit has decided to “enter the Iranian market in full force” after recent negotiations, adding it will re-open its office in Iran in the next two-three months.
“According to the agreement reached with Mercedes-Benz, a five-year deal will be signed soon under which Setareh Iran as the importer and Top Khodro Company as the manufacturer will start distribution of Benz cars in Iran,” he said.
“A 10-year deal will be also signed for production of commercial vehicles…Besides, Mercedes-Benz has announced its readiness to buy 30% of shares in Iranian Diesel Engine Manufacturing (IDEM) and begin production of the latest world engines,” he added.
Another Iranian company, Vehicle Axle Manufacturing Co. (Vamco), will expand cooperation with the German car maker, Yekke-Zare said.
Iran Khodro has also held negotiations with Volkswagen on production of cars and investment in Iran, as well as transfer of technology and exports of products.
“Ultimately, which company will be Volkswagen’s partner in Iran, let’s the company announce itself. But we think Volkswagen is one of the suitable choices for partnership with Iran Khodro,” he added.
The top automakers’ return follows a visit by German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel to Iran this month at the head of a high-profile trade delegation.
Gabriel said he had brought the best German companies which enjoyed very good relations with Iran for years and tried to maintain those ties even under the sanctions regime.
The minister headed a 60-member delegation of big German businesses such as Siemens, Linde, VW, Daimler and GIZ on his three-day visit to the Islamic Republic.