Iran’s Mellat bank to reopen Seoul branch next month

TEHRAN (ISNA)- Iran’s Mellat Bank plans to normalize operations of its branch in Seoul as early as next month following the lifting of sanctions on the Middle East country, a bank official said Wednesday.

Last month, the U.S. and the European Union removed economic curbs on Tehran on the heels of its landmark deal on nuclear armaments with Washington, Koreatimes reported.

Since the opening of the branch in the South Korean capital in June 2001, Mellat Bank had supported bilateral trade and foreign exchange transactions, as well as the transfer of wages for Iranians working in South Korea.

Its operations, however, were restricted in 2010 upon the international economic and financial sanctions against Tehran, with the bank carrying out limited won-based transactions.

“We’ve been working to rebuild the necessary infrastructure to resume normal operations,” said Kim Tae-gil, the head of the Seoul branch.

The restoration of the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication system, a key platform for international transactions, will be completed within next week, which means it will be allowed to issue letters of credit and engage in the trade business, according to the official