Iran’s industries ministry (MIMT) has denied media reports suggesting the country could ban imports of cars from China.
An MIMT statement issued on Monday said, however, that French companies will be kept out of the Iranian car market despite a decision to resume imports of finished cars into the country after nearly four years.
The statement came after some media reports claimed that Iran might decide to block car imports from China after Beijing and several Arab countries issued a communiqué at the end of a joint summit in Saudi Arabia last week that was not well received in Tehran.
It also came just a week before Iran is to take delivery of a first shipment of foreign-made cars four years after it banned imports to support local manufacturers.
The MIMT statement said that unlike French companies that decided to comply with US sanctions on Iran in 2018, car manufacturers from China have continued to cooperate with local partners over the past years.
It reiterated that Iran will maintain an outright ban on any car imports or joint manufacturing schemes involving French carmakers.
France-based automotive companies Peugeot and Renault decided to leave the Iranian car market in 2018 under pressure from the US and despite being involved in major contracts with Iranian car manufacturers.