TEHRAN – Companies from Austria, China, Germany, Italy, and Japan have been negotiating with Iran in recent months to invest in the country’s free trade zones, according to Mohammad Mo’ezzodin, who is the vice chairman of the Iranian High Council for Free Trade Zones.
“Iran offers special incentives to foreign investors, such as a 20-year tax exemption, the possibility to establish companies with one-hundred-percent ownership, and visa-free travel, in order to encourage them to invest in Iran’s free zones,” the Fars News Agency quoted Mo’ezzodin as saying on Sunday.
One of the striking developments in Iran in recent months has been the large external capital inflows, mostly in the form of foreign direct investment, thanks largely to its initial progress in macroeconomic stabilization, improved investment regime, and progress in nuclear negotiations with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council (Russia, China, the U.S., France, and Britain) plus Germany.
In July 2013, Iranian Deputy Economy Minister Behrouz Alishiri said the country will try to lure foreign investors with tax exemptions ranging as high as 100 percent. Iran needs annual domestic and foreign investment of about $300 billion until 2015 to meet its economic objectives, Alishiri said.
Business Monitor said in its April report that the Iranian economy will return to growth in 2014, as the improvement in relations with the West and better macroeconomic management will lead to an improved outlook for exports and increased business and consumer confidence.
Recent improvements in relations with the West bode well for the country’s economy, which is forecast to expand by 2.9 percent in 2015, according to the report.
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