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NEW YORK – Bowing to consumer pressure, Porsche has stopped exporting vehicles to Iran. Porsche had been one of 13 car companies exposed for its business links to Iran on IranWatchList.com, a joint consumer campaign of NYC Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Iran180 and United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI). Today, Porsche became the second company to be removed from the Watch List. In correspondence with de Blasio’s office, Porsche North America’s General Counsel & Secretary confirmed the company’s withdrawal from Iran, assured it has no intention to return “in the near future” and pledged to dismantle the Porsche Centre Tehran website currently hosted on Porsche’s server.
“That’s two down, eleven to go. I applaud Porsche for making the right decision. Consumers here have the power to force these companies out of Iran and tighten the screws on Tehran’s regime,” said NYC Public Advocate Bill de Blasio. “Our message is clear: you can do business with the Iranian regime or you can do business with the American consumer—but you can’t do both.”
“We applaud Porsche for ending its Iran business. We are satisfied with the pledges Porsche has made, and UANI will now list Porsche as being withdrawn from Iran,” said Ambassador Mark Wallace, CEO of United Against Nuclear Iran. “Porsche joins fellow automakers Hyundai and Karsan in having taken the responsible action of pulling out of Iran. Other automakers—particularly those doing business in the U.S.—must now follow suit, and end all business with the brutal Iranian regime.”
“Porsche has listened to the outrage of people in the United States and around the world and has wisely taken a stand on the side of human rights, and against nuclear proliferation,” said Christopher DeVito, Executive Director of Iran180.
As recently as 2011, Porsche had been aggressively expanding its business in Iran, importing $17 million worth of vehicles during a single five-month period. Its vehicles are sought-after status symbols by the country’s elite. Porsche has since severed its relationship with Moin Motors, the company’s licensed importer in Iran.
The 11 automakers remaining on the Iran Watch List website’s “Virtual Showroom” are Fiat, Isuzu, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Peugeot, Renault, Suzuki, Toyota, Volvo and Nissan—manufacturer of New York City’s “Taxi of Tomorrow.” Combined, these companies sell more than 650,000 vehicles per year in the country—making it the second-largest sector in Iran’s economy. Despite escalating sanctions, the automotive sector in Iran remains fast-growing because of these companies’ investments. Consumers can use the Watch List to directly pressure companies though social media, including Facebook and Twitter.
Join the campaign at www.IranWatchList.com.