Steel is Turkey's latest helping hand to Iran

August 16, 2012 18:20

LONDON - Turkey's importance as a trade conduit to Iran has widened to include supplying most of its steel as Turkish banks are among the very few still willing to arrange financing for the sanctions-hit country.

Despite sometimes strained political ties, trade between the two neighbors has risen sharply over the past decade, with Turkey regarded by some as a possible weak link in international sanctions imposed on Iran over Tehran's suspected development of nuclear weapons.

Iran is Turkey's biggest export market for gold while Turkey is Europe's only remaining importer of Iranian oil.

Now traders say steel bound for Iran is on the rise, after plunging earlier this year as toughened US-led sanctions left Iranian buyers without access to major currencies.

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