Iran announced on Sunday that it will send a letter to the World Bank to protest at its decision to place Iran’s loans in a nonperforming status and suspend paying new loans to the country.
"The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, as a shareholder of the World Bank, will send its official protest letter to the WB's president," Iran's Deputy Economy Minister Behrouz Alishiri told FNA on Sunday.
He said that the delays cited by the WB as the reason for suspending its funds to Iran occurred due to the sanctions imposed by the western states against the country's banking sector.
Alishiri criticized the WB for its political attitude towards Iran, and said the international body has not granted any loans to Iran in recent years due to the pressures of the US and certain European countries, while Tehran has always paid back its loans on-time.
He said that according to the WB's legal advisors, grant of loans to the member states should not be influenced by the UN sanctions against any given member.
The World Bank announced on Thursday that Iran has not paid back any of its loans to the World Bank for more than six months, adding that it was placing Iran’s loans in nonperforming status, as it must do when a country has not made any payments for more than half a year. Iran owed the bank $697 million on June 30, of which $79 million was overdue.
According to the WB announcement, Iran will also be ineligible for any new World Bank funds, although it has not borrowed from the bank since 2005 and has no current World Bank programs. Tehran is still required to make payments on what it owes the bank.