Zarif: Sanctions impaired Iran’s economic transparency   

April 15, 2017 - 21:3

TEHRAN – Sanctions imposed on Iran over its nuclear program dealt a major blow to the country’s economic transparency, an issue much neglected in assessing the outcomes of the 2015 international nuclear deal, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Saturday.

“Sanctions and the way they were addressed by the previous administration… ruined fiscal discipline and transparency in Iran’s economy,” Zarif was quoted as saying in an address to an international event on exchange, bank and insurance in Tehran. 

Zarif’s remarks were a reference to two consecutive administrations (2005-2013) of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, when sanctions against the country over its nuclear program escalated. 

In 2007, Ahmadinejad dismissed any new UN sanctions resolution as "a torn piece of paper" that would not stop Tehran's nuclear work.

Ahmadinejad's defiant rhetoric and bad governance pushed Iran towards international isolation and cost the country seven UN resolutions.

Mounting pressures on Tehran during the sanctions era created a black market for imports of basic goods and transfer of oil revenues into the country. 

Zarif hinted at a rig going missing during the Ahmadinejad administration as an instance of irregularities at the sanctions time. 

In 2011, sanctions made it difficult for Tehran to rent oil drilling rigs, so the Iranian Offshore Engineering and Construction Company spent $87 million to buy an oil drilling rig that was never delivered, called “the case of the missing rig” in newspaper headlines. 

However, the situation has changed at the wake of the nuclear deal with global powers that removed sanctions against the country, paving the way for Tehran to re-engage with the global community. 

Iran could attract $12 billion foreign investment in the past Iranian calendar year of 1395 (which ended on March 20) as the result of the positive environment created in post-sanctions era.  


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