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Economic Section


Iran–South Africa Economic relations

South Africa and Iran share good trade relations, with South African exports increasing by 7 percent from $1.4 billion in 2006 to $1.5 billion in 2007, and imports from Iran, mostly crude oil, increasing by 13.5 percent from $18.3 billion in 2006 to $20.8 billion in 2007.Iran was the largest supplier of crude oil to South Africa in 2007.
Several South African companies are involved in major projects in Iran. MTN Group has a 49-percent stake in the Irancell consortium which was awarded the second mobile telecommunications license in Iran. It started operations in October 2006.
Sasol is participating in a $900-million polymer joint venture with the Iranian state-owned petrochemicals company, Pars Petrochemicals Company, which produces ethylene as well as high- and low-density polyethylene. The joint venture is known as the Arya Sasol Polymer Company. Iran and South Africa have equally invested 1.35 billion euros in the project. Arya Sasol Petrochemical Complex is among the world’s biggest polymer projects. When the complex comes on stream, 400,000 tons of ethylene, 90,000 tons of C3 cut, 300,000 tons of medium and heavy polyethylene, and 300,000 tons of light polyethylene will be added to Iran’s petrochemical output. Construction operations of the complex started in Pars Special Economic Energy Zone in 2002 and the project has made over 97-percent progress by May 2009.
In the 12th meeting of the South Africa–Iran joint commission held in Tehran, Iran 10-11 May the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation condemned the imposition of Sanctions against Iran, saying the sanctions are "irrational and illegal". The minister showed interest to improve the trade relations in areas such as education, health, investments, mining, transport, agriculture, science and technology, and energy once the sanctions are lifted
Ministry of foreign affairs,
Islamic Republic of IRAN,
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