Passage fee row continues between Iranian, Turkish representatives
Iran is against the latest hike in the border passage price for Iranian trucks, imposed by Turkey, the Iranian Embassy in Turkey said by a written statement on Oct. 19.
The Iranian Embassy, however, has suggested creating a roadmap to resolve the problem between Iran and Turkey over the new higher passage prices.
“Although Iranian and Turkish trucks pay 20 kuruş for one liter of fuel in Iran, Iranian trucks pay four Turkish Liras for one liter of fuel in Turkey, 20-fold of what they pay in Iran. The Iranian government has asked for 80 cents for each liter of fuel from foreign trucks when they enter Iran for the last 10 years, and Turkish trucks are not an exception. Turkish trucks pay three liras for one liter in Iran, still one lira below what they pay in Turkey, but Iranian trucks are now being asked to pay much more than they had paid earlier because of the latest hikes by the Turkish government,” said the statement.
Iranian representatives noted that Iran did not any discriminate against any foreign truck.
The crisis between Turkey and Iran regarding truck transit fees have lately heated up amid the latest hikes in passage fees.
Turkish representatives have been objecting to the $750 transit pass fee, which Iran applies to Turkish trucks, saying it is too high. Then, Turkey increased its transit fee for Iranian trucks to $750 on Oct. 10. Iran doubled its fee to $1,500 a few hours later. Turkey doubled its fee for Iranian trucks to $1,500 following Iran’s move, saying it has started taking 25 euros per 100 kilometers for fuel from Iranian trucks, as Iran does to Turkish trucks.
Turkish transporters have paid more than $1 billion to Iran for the difference in fuel prices between the two countries, said representatives from the International Transporters Association (UND) on Oct. 17.
“After Turkey had started to ask for an extra passage price from Iranian truckers, Iran made a move in retaliation and began asking for the same price from Turkish trucks as what Turkey asks of Iranian trucks for the first time, as Turkey’s latest move is against the transportation agreement between Iran and Turkey,” Iranian representatives said in the statement.
As fuel is much cheaper in Iran than it is in Turkey, Iranian trucks carry cargo up to 1,000 euros cheaper than Turkish trucks do, so it is quite normal for Turkish exporters or others to prefer Iranian trucks to carry their goods, read the statement.
“This is definitely unfair competition. Iran carries freight for lower costs than Turkish trucks can. Iranians come to Turkey with their full gas tanks, which they filled up $0.18 per liter, and they upload their cargo to carry. Turkish trucks lost their market share dramatically. They cannot find customers at home in Turkey or in Iran due to higher fuel costs,” the UND had said earlier, adding Turkey was the victim in this system. Iranian representatives said they offered a roadmap to Turkish representatives and were open to discuss these possible scenarios. One of the possible scenarios allows for the same fuel prices for Turkish trucks in Iran with the price Iranian trucks pay in Turkey at four Turkish Liras and the same fuel price for Iranian trucks in Turkey with the price foreign trucks pay in Iran at 20 kuruş, a new price for Turkish and Iranian trucks set by the representatives from the two countries or the continuation of the old system in which Turkish trucks buy cheap fuel in Iran after paying an extra price when entering Iran. Another option is for Turkey to explain which services it offers to Iranian truckers in return for the new extra price set for them, the statement said.