Realizing ‘Surge in Production’ requires macro policy changes: ICCIMA head

May 19, 2020 - 15:58

TEHRAN – Head of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) says in order to develop the domestic production fundamental changes must be made in the government’s policies, ICCIMA portal reported.

“If fundamental changes do not take place in the country's macro policies, the surge in production will remain as a slogan and we will not be able to realize the production boom,” Gholam-Hossein Shafeie said.

The current Iranian calendar year (began on March 20) is named the year of “Surge in Production” by the Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei.

According to Shafeie, the productive sectors should become more attractive to the investors and profitability of the productive sector must be higher than that of the commercial sector.

“If this does not happen, no matter how hard we try, the resources will go from production to non-productive and commercial sectors,” Shafe’i stressed.

Referring to the performance of the productive sectors in combating the coronavirus, the official said: "There are many potentials and capabilities in the country’s productive sector, some of which were displayed in the battle against the coronavirus."

“There are many countries in the world that are not under the same restrictive sanctions as Iran, but during the pandemic they did not act as well as our country“, he underlined.

The ICCIMA head also mentioned the privatization of state-owned companies and noted: "If we are looking to achieve the goals of the Article 44 of the country’s constitution, we must focus on handing over the management of such companies to private sector."

“Ownership changes are happening now, but there is no change in the management. This approach contradicts the main objectives of Article 44. If the management is to remain with the government and only shares transfer, we will not achieve those main goals.”

In early March, Iranian Finance and Economic Affairs Minister Farhad Dejpasand said offering the shares of state-owned companies, which are planned to be privatized, would be sped up.

Dejpasand had previously said that the government should amend its policies and methods of setting the prices and transferring the shares in the process of privatization.

In Iran, implementation of privatization plan aimed at more productivity, investment making, job creation, promotion of trade balance, more competition in domestic economy, and reducing financial and management burden on the government has been under the spotlight over the past decade.

The law on implementation of the general policies of the Article 44 of Iran's Constitution on privatizing state-owned companies was declared in 2006 in a bid to downsize the government and promote the private sector’s role in the national economy.

Later, the government envisioned a large privatization program in the country’s Fifth Five-Year National Development Plan (2010-2015) with the aim of privatizing about 20 percent of the state-owned firms each year.

Under the present interpretation of the Article 44, some state-owned companies have been privatized to reduce their financial burden on the country’s budget and also increase their productivity.

EF/MA

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