The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) has approved three deals for Iranian importers worth US$110mn.

The news was broken by Iran’s deputy minister of economic affairs and finance, Behrouz Alishiri, who says that the Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) as an affiliate of the IDB, has given the green light to the loans.

The corporates involved have not been made public; however, according to Alishiri the ITFC has approved a single US$50mn loan for an Iranian company to finance the importation of raw material.

Two more applications for loan facilities, again by Iranian companies, worth a total of US$60mn have also been approved by the ITFC, says Alishiri.

Iran is the IDB’s second largest shareholder.

The news of the funding will come as some relief to Iranian businesses, as trade sanctions continue to mount in the European Union and the US.

In July 2010, the EU followed the lead of the US and forbid involvement in Iran’s energy sector as well as severely restricting trade financing and banking relationships.

Energy firms Royal Dutch Shell, Statoil, Eni and Total all cut ties with Iran as part of the sanctions.

A December 2010 report written for the US congress and seen by GTR titled Iran Sanctions notes that “because so many major economic powers have imposed sanctions on Iran, the sanctions are, by all accounts, having a growing effect on Iran’s economy. The sanctions are reinforcing the effects of Iran’s economic bottlenecks.”