Vice President Jejomar C. Binay has assured Filipino women married to Iranians that he will discuss with President Benigno S. Aquino III the possibility of relaxing the government’s current policy on Iranian nationals.

The Philippines currently has a policy classifying Iranians as “restricted nationals.”

The Vice President said that the women, whom he met while he was in Tehran to attend the 16th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit, expressed their Iranian husbands’ interest in investing in the Philippines but said the government policy was causing “administrative problems.”

“I promised to take this up with the President who, I am sure, would like to address this issue expeditiously for the benefit of all our countrymen married to Iranians,” he said.

Upon his arrival on Saturday from the Middle Eastern country, Binay said a number of the women have attempted to bring their own personal investments to the country to no avail.

According to Binay, Iran is eager to increase its investments in the Philippines in line with its shift of interest from Europe to Asia.

“[Iran’s Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi] said Iran has reduced its investments in Europe, and has put in at least 50 billion Euros in China,” he said.

“We agreed to encourage our respective chambers of commerce to discuss the various ways and means of engaging in expanded investments and trade,” he added.

The Vice President revealed that officers and members of the Iranian Chamber of Commerce may soon come to the country to look into possible investments as a result of this initiative.

According to the Philippine Embassy in Tehran, there are more than 900 Filipino permanent residents married to Iranians living in the Middle Eastern nation.