An Iranian banking official revealed Thursday that all Russian banks and 106 banks in 13 other countries have been connected to Iran's financial messaging system known as SEPAM.
With SEPAM, Iranian banks are no longer in need of the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) network, Mohsen Karimi, the deputy governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) for international affairs confirmed.
On Sunday, the CBI announced that the SEPAM and the Financial Messaging System of the Bank of Russia known as SPFS, a Russian equivalent of the SWIFT, were connected following the signing of a deal between the two central banks on the same day.
The move was the first step of the joint action plan for banking cooperation between Iran and Russia agreed by the two countries' central banks last year, CBI Governor Mohammadreza Farzin says.
Iran and Russia, both under sanctions imposed by the United States, have been expanding their political and economic relations to counter the US moves.