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‘Iran can supply food to 10 states like Qatar’

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Qatar's diplomatic row with its Arab neighbors triggered a rush to the shops over fears of scarcity of food supplies.

A top Iranian official says the country stands fully ready to answer the food requirements of Qatar much beyond its current needs. 

Abbas Maroufan, the deputy for domestic trade of the Government Trading Corporation of Iran, was quoted by media as saying that Iran could support the food requirements of “10 countries like Qatar”.

Maroufan emphasized that Iran had no problem in answering Qatar’s food needs, stressing the Islamic Republic would quickly do so as soon as there was a request to the same effect from Doha. 

Iran started to export food to Qatar immediately after the Persian Gulf country came under a blockade earlier this month by Saudi Arabia and several of its allies as a result of a row over regional politics.

Officials in Tehran over the past week said at least five planeloads of food supplies each weighing 100 tonnes had been sent to Qatar.

On Wednesday, Iran said it had sent a ship with 180 tonnes of fruits and vegetables to the Persian Gulf emirate. 

Iran’s media said the shipment was made on Tuesday from the country’s southern port of Bandar Lengeh in Hormozgan Province.

Officials had already said it would take a maximum 12 hours for a ship to reach Qatar from Iran’s southern ports.

Other reports said Iran was also looking into exporting dairy products to Qatar and certain negotiations to the same effect were underway.

Officials have been quoted by media as saying that Iran could ship at least 45 tonnes of dairy products to Qatar.

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