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Renault signs deal to make 300,000 cars per year in Iran

PARIS/TEHRAN (UPI) — French automaker Renault announced a joint venture with Iranian authorities on Monday, despite U.S. efforts to isolate Iran economically.

Executives of Renault and Iran’s Industrial Development and Renovation Organization celebrate the signing of a deal in Tehran Monday — by which Renault will make up to 300,000 vehicles per year near Tehran. (Photo courtesy Press TV)

The $779 million deal between Renault, Iran’s state-run Industrial Development and Renovation Organization and privately-held Parto Negin Naseh, calls for up to 300,000 cars per year to be built at a factory in Saveh beginning in about 18 months.

Monday’s agreement calls for 30 percent of Renaults manufactured in Iran to be exported. The first phase of the deal calls for 150,000 vehicles.

The pact comes after PSA Group, maker of Peugeot and Citroen vehicles and Renault’s French rival, began discussions to build cars for the Iranian market. It also followed the easing of trade restrictions against Iran after an agreement limiting Tehran’s nuclear program.

The Trump administration has shown antagonism toward the nuclear deal, which could potentially put the landmark 2015 agreement at risk.

The United States retaliated against an Iranian space launch in June with sanctions against six Iranian companies. Despite trade restrictions, Renault has had a manufacturing presence in Iran since 2004.

“We are happy to sign one of Renault’s most historical contracts here,” said Renault representative Thierry Bollore at the signing ceremony Monday in Tehran. “Within Renault, Iran is known for its great industrial potential, its automotive industry infrastructure, strong human resources and unique geopolitical position. Renault has proved its commitment with a nonstop presence in Iran since the beginning of its operation in 2004, and this signing confirms our strong intent and commitment for long-term operations as a strategic partner of Iran’s automotive industry.”

Written by UPI Writer Ed Adamczyk

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Renault signs deal to make 300,000 cars per year in Iran