Tehran Says Russia Partly Replaced Dollar With Ruble In Iran Trades

January 7, 2012 at 17:50

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Tehran has replaced dollars with rubles in some of its dealings with Russia, an Iranian official was quoted as saying Saturday, as the Islamic Republic take steps to mitigate the impact of sanctions on its central bank.

Speaking to Iran’s Fars news agency, Tehran’s Ambassador to Moscow Seyed Reza Sajjadi said the proposal for replacing the U.S. dollar with the rubles and the Iranian rial was initially made by Russian president Dmitry Medvedev to his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmadinejad last June.

“Since then, we have acted on this basis and a part of our interactions is done in ruble now,” Sajjadi said.

New sanctions approved by U.S. president Barack Obama last week ban international banks from interacting with the Central Bank of Iran. Though it comes with exemptions and grace period, the legislation is set to complicate any clearing of Iranian oil sales in dollars.

Fars quoted the Iranian ambassador as saying Moscow opposed unilateral sanctions on Iran outside the U.N. Security Council, in particular the recent sanctions against the CBI.

The “Russians have clearly announced that they will not accept these sanctions and Iran’s nuclear issue is resolvable just through negotiations,” Sajjadi said.

Iran has replaced the dollar with local currencies in its oil trade with India, China and Japan, Fars reported.