Iran Says Payment Problem for Buying COVID-19 Vaccine Resolved

The governor of the Central Bank of Iran says the problem of procuring the coronavirus vaccine has been solved.

Abdolnaser Hemmati said Thursday the payment could be made to purchase the virus from abroad now.

“In one of my previous posts, I stressed that US sanctions and the necessity of winning the approval of OFAC (the Office of Foreign Assets Control – which is a financial intelligence and enforcement agency of the US Treasury Department) had delayed and impeded the procurement of the coronavirus vaccine from COVAX (a global initiative aimed at working with vaccine manufacturers to provide countries worldwide equitable access to safe and effective vaccines),” he said.

“This morning, we received initial agreement to transfer money from an account in a bank (other than the assets of the Central Bank of Iran in South Korea), and accordingly, we issued an order to make the payment,” he added.

“And we keep following up on the issue,” the official added.
“In this phase, the Central Bank of Iran has earmarked €200 million for the purchase of the COVID-19 vaccine. If need be, we will provide more finances,” he said.

The central bank governor noted the necessary arrangements have been made with the health ministry in that regard.

“Our dear people should rest assured that the coronavirus vaccine will be purchased and brought in as soon as possible,” Hemmati said.

He underlined that the central bank will also appropriate the required funds to equip the domestic production line for the coronavirus vaccine.

“In addition to allocating foreign currency for buying the coronavirus vaccine, we are also lending the necessary support and logistics in terms of providing forex to procure the equipment needed for the domestic production line for the vaccine, and we have prioritized this issue,” he said.

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