FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 6, 2011
Contact: Kimmie Lipscomb, [email protected]
Phone: (212) 554-3296
UANI Calls on Mayor Bloomberg to Refuse to Award Taxi of Tomorrow Contract to Companies that Conduct Business in Iran
New York, NY - United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) on Wednesday called on Mayor Michael Bloomberg to refuse to award the contract for the Taxi of Tomorrow campaign to any company that conducts business in Iran. The Taxi of Tomorrow campaign is a competition designed to select New York City's exclusive taxi cab for a decade.
Two of the three finalists for the lucrative contract, Japan's Nissan Motor Company ("Nissan") and Turkey's Karsan Otomotiv ("Karsan"), do business in Iran. Through their respective business operations, Nissan and Karsan are facilitating the Iranian government's ability to engage in behavior that runs directly counter to the security and values of the people of New York City.
In a letter to the Mayor Bloomberg, UANI President Ambassador Mark D. Wallace wrote:
By way of
background, UANI asks your office to consider
the following issues. With respect to Nissan, they have had a
relationship with the Iranian car manufacturer, Pars Khodro, and have
producing cars and trucks in Iran since 1987. These
to this day. (The New York Times, "Profiting from Iran, and
the US," March 6,
2010). Nissan and its partner Pars Khodro make no attempt to
business relationship and it is advertised on a variety of company
their company Website. (See, Nissan's "Profile 2008"
and the Pars Khodro Website).
Similarly, the Turkish auto company, Karsan entered into a five-year exclusive distribution agreement in 2007 with Iran's Sanat Khuodro Kamau to export J9 minibus models to Iran. (Karsan Report, May 10, 2007). Karsan has entered into a business relationship with the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC Site, "Karsan J9 Premier," February 26, 2007) and, as recently as July 2010, the company indicated that their vehicles would be sold not only in Iran, but Syria as well. (Press Release, "Creation of 'J10' for 7 Million Euros Astonished French Peugeot," July 15, 2010).
Nissan and Karsan's decision to do business in Iran is wrong. As Mayor of New York, however, you can let them know that the people of New York City will not help finance those irresponsible and unethical business decisions.
Any company seeking to do business with New York City should only be eligible to do so if they are able to certify that they do not do business with Iran. Companies should not be able to hide behind the corporate veil of foreign subsidiaries when they make such certification. Attached for your review is a proposed certification for your consideration. Certifications such as these help the public make informed investment decisions and will enable New York City officials to ensure that taxpayer dollars are spent in ways that align with the values of the people of this great city.
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