Germany’s largest steel firm quits Iran

GERMANY’S biggest steelmaker ThyssenKrupp has joined a growing list of businesses which have withdrawn from Iran in response to ever-harsher sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

ThyssenKrupp said it would freeze all new business immediately and terminate existing contracts as soon as possible. It is the latest in a series of German companies to cut ties with Iran. Others include Daimler, Munich Re, Siemens and Allianz.

A spokesman for ThyssenKrupp said Iran accounted for less than 0.5 per cent of group revenues of €40.6bn (£34.5bn) in its last financial year to 30 September 2009.

Most of its existing business in Iran comprised engineering projects for cement factories, he added.

The announcement came as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told the United Nations that most people believe the US government was responsible for the attacks of 11 September 2001, prompting US?delegates to storm out in protest.

Another theory, he said, was “that some segments within the US government orchestrated the attack to reverse the declining American economy, and its grips on the Middle East, in order to save the Zionist regime.”