ISLAMABAD Aug 9 Pakistan has agreed a price for
1 million tonnes of wheat it will export to Iran in a barter
deal, a senior Pakistani official involved in the negotiations
said on Thursday.
The deal, first proposed in March with Iran exporting
fertiliser and iron ore to Pakistan in exchange for wheat, has
been deadlocked for months over price and quality.
Iran's attempts to secure millions of tonnes of wheat
through barter deals with Pakistan and India, avoiding Western
sanctions aimed at deterring its nuclear programme, have
faltered. Tehran faces premium prices in international markets
to secure critical food supplies.
Food imports are not targeted under the sanctions, but
Iranian companies have been cut off from much of the global
banking system because of the financial measures against Tehran,
making payments difficult and discouraging traders.
Iran will import wheat at $300 per tonne, the official from
Pakistan's Ministry of National Food Security and Research told
Reuters. The official requested anonymity as he was not
authorised to speak to the media.
"The price for wheat has been agreed, at $300 dollars per
tonne, but Iranian officials still have to visit Pakistan to
check the quality of the wheat before shipments can be
finalised," the official said.
"We also have to wait for discussions on the price of
fertiliser and iron that will come to Pakistan. I don't expect
further movement on this until the end of August."
(Reporting by Rebecca Conway; Writing by Qasim Nauman, editing
by William Hardy)