Minister: Iran can join WTO in 2 years

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s minister of industry expressed optimism about the country’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in the not too distant future, saying any US attempt to block Iran’s bid for WTO membership will be to Washington’s own detriment.

“Our country can join the World Trade Organization in less than two years,” Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh said in a television talk show on Saturday night.

Iran has been requesting to join the WTO since 1995, and was admitted to the organization as an observer in 2005, but sanctions began to hit Tehran afterwards and certain countries opposed to its membership, the minister explained.

Nematzadeh said he has held talks with representatives of 20 countries at a recent conference in Kenya, saying all of them had a “positive view” on Iran’s accession to the WTO.

He also expressed the hope that new circumstances following implementation of a July nuclear deal between Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany) would pave the way for the country’s membership in the WTO.

Iran is prepared to present its updated trade regime, and will adapt itself to the regulations and tariffs stipulated by the WTO rules, the minister stressed.

Asked about the possibility of US opposition to Iran’s accession, Nematzadeh said such obstruction after the extensive nuclear negotiations will do harm to the US itself.

Dubbed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the nuclear deal between Iran and the six powers will terminate all nuclear-related sanctions imposed on Iran after coming into force.

Experts believe that Iran’s economic growth would rise remarkably after the deal takes effect.

By Tasnim News Agency