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Iran ramps up gold imports in 6 months to late June

Iran imported over 3.2 metric tons of gold in the six months to late June.

Iran has ramped up its imports of gold amid efforts by the country to offset the impacts of US sanctions on its economy.

Figures by the Iranian customs office (IRICA) released on Wednesday showed that the country had imported 3.262 metric tons of gold in the six months to late June.

The figures indicated that the gold ingots imported into Iran over the period were worth over $202 million.

The figures come six months after the Iranian government eased its bans on gold imports to allow exporters in the country to use gold to pay their hard currency liabilities to the government.

Under normal circumstances and before the easing of the bans, Iranian businesses were supposed to supply part of their export proceeds to a system where importers could access hard currency they needed at subsidized prices.

Exporters had complained of difficulties in repatriating their hard currency earnings to Iran mainly because of US sanctions that restrict Iranian banks’ access to the international banking system.

Easing the ban on gold imports is part of measures adopted by the Iranian government is recent years to lessen the impacts of US sanctions on its trade ties with the rest of the world.

IRICA figures showed that gold imports into Iran had accelerated over the past three months as some 1.877 mt of gold worth over $121 million had been imported into the country over the period.

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