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India paid USD 5 billion Iran oil debt

September 05/2011

(Arabian oil and gas) -- India has paid off the last of its USD 5 billion debt to Iran which accrued due to problems with payment in the wake of international sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

"Although all the USD 5 billion of India's oil debt has been cleared, because of selling oil again Iran will always be a creditor of that country," India's Central Bank Governor Mahmoud Bahmani told the official IRNA news agency.

In order to get around US-backed sanctions against Iran, Indian companies are making the oil payments in euros via Turkey's state-owned Halkbank, according to Indian offcials cited by Reuters. Bahmani said a payment-in-kind system offered by India was rejected by Tehran.

Iran has been slapped with sanctions in reaction to its nuclear program, which the US and EU says is for the development of nuclear weapons, something Tehran denies.

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