Foreigners can set up, own companies in Iran: SEO chief

September 23, 2015 - 0:0

TEHRAN - There is no major restriction for foreigners to establish and own a company in Iran, said Mohammad Fetanat, the president as well as the board of directors’ chairman of Securities and Exchange Organization of Iran (SEO).

Fetanat made the statement in the “Joint Gathering between Iran Capital Market and French Economic Practitioners”, which was hosted by SEO in Tehran on September 21.

There is a wide range of investment opportunities in Iran across many industries, the official stated; adding: “In our industries, we have needs and opportunities for investment in management expertise. This should be of interest to the French players that are able to create value and drive growth by bringing their operational and managerial skills.”

“It is a moment of very important transition for our country as well as our capital market. As the regulatory and supervisory of Iran capital market, SEO keenly wills the impact and possibilities of this transition”, Fetanat noted.

“We have witnessed a triumph of diplomacy and good sense recently, as a long and complex negotiation between p5+1 and Iran has culminated to the win-win approach, grounded in mutual respect and desire for peace”, he stated.

“This [nuclear] accord has opened the way to Iran’s broadly engaging and connecting to the world again and we anticipate its full implementation in the near future”, the official added.

He said under the sanctions, Iran managed to follow the guidelines of “Resistance Economy” proposed by the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic for establishing a knowledge-based economy relying on domestic capacities and cutting dependence on foreign countries.

He referred to some factors, which are often mentioned as the advantages of Iran for attracting foreign investment, as the country’s geographical location, its large population with a major part consisting of educated and young people, and its GDP, which is among the top 20 GDPs in the world in terms of PPP.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Fetanat stated: “Our stock exchange market is the oldest in the Middle East, founded about 50 years ago. It is one of the largest in the region.”

“In addition to the TSE (Tehran Stock Exchange), we have three exchanges. “Farabourse” for “Sukuk” (Over-the-Counter stock exchange for the Islamic bonds), Energy Exchange for oil and gas, and Mercantile Exchange for agricultural and industrial commodities”, the official explained.

Addressing the same gathering, Hossein Abdoh Tabrizi, a high council member of the SEO, referred to the 121 infrastructure projects that the previous day Iranian Road and Urban Development Minister Abbas Akhoundi said will be offered to the foreign investors at the first Iran Transportation and Urban Development Summit (ITUDS), which will be held from October 3-4 in Tehran.

“In that ministry we have got for those of you, who are interested in infrastructure projects, approaches of investment for the given situation of Iran”, the official stated.

He mentioned the approaches as BOT (build–operate–transfer), BLT (build–lease–transfer) and lease purchase.

For his part, Yves-Thibault De Silguy, the leader of French delegation, said: “This meeting is a great opportunity for the financial and investment institutes.”

De Silguy, who is the vice chairman as well as senior director of the board of directors in VINCI SA (a French concessions and construction company), said: “The delegation that I’m leading now is even larger than the previous one. Indeed they are 130 companies from all sectors,” he highlighted.

“In order to better understand cooperation opportunities existing for us on the way we could contribute to Iran’s economic development in the light of expect lifting of sanctions, it was very insightful for us to discover your vision form the side of capital market, also when Iran should follow to improve competitiveness of economy,” he noted.

A delegation of France’s main business group, Medef, comprising about 130 firms, including top companies such as Total and Peugeot, arrived in Tehran on September 21 with the aim of encouraging future trade deals.
The delegation was accompanied by French Agriculture Minister Stephane Le Foll and Trade Minister Matthias Fekl.