Iran Economy NewsDubai will never sever trade ties with Iran -...

Dubai will never sever trade ties with Iran – official

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Reuters: Dubai will never sever trade ties with neighbour and major trade partner Iran, a senior Dubai economy official said on Wednesday, as pressure on Tehran to curb its uranium enrichment drive keeps mounting.

By Martina Fuchs

DUBAI, Dec 1 (Reuters) – Dubai will never sever trade ties with neighbour and major trade partner Iran, a senior Dubai economy official said on Wednesday, as pressure on Tehran to curb its uranium enrichment drive keeps mounting.

The United Arab Emirates, to which Dubai belongs, has signalled it will rein back its role as a trading and financial lifeline for Iran after the U.N. Security Council imposed a fourth round of sanctions on Iran in June over accusations it is developing a nuclear bomb.

“It’s never an option to end trade with Iran,” Sami al-Qamzi, director general of Dubai’s Department of Economic Development, told reporters on the sidelines of an event.

Asked what effect sanctions would have on Dubai’s economy, he said: “There will be a weight, there will be an impact, but we hope that through negotiations we’ll come to a solution to reduce the negative impact.”

“This is a federal issue, the UAE will comply with all the resolutions…,” he said.

Talks between Iran and a representative of the six major powers — the United States, France, Russia, Britain, China and Germany — are due to resume next week in Geneva in the first such meeting in more than year.

Tehran rejects the charge it is seeking to develop nuclear bombs.

Separately, Qamzi told reporters that Dubai’s economy was expected to grow 3-3.5 percent in 2011, while inflation should remain at or below 4 percent.

“We are forecasting 3 to 3.5 percent growth in 2011,” he said, adding: “This year it is around 4 percent and we hope that inflation will stay or be less than 4 percent.” (Writing by Tamara Walid; Editing by Jon Boyle)

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