FDI in Iran hits new record, exceeds $3.6b in 2010

Iran Materials 27 July 2011 12:50 (UTC +04:00)

Foreign direct investment in Iran hit a new record in 2010 and surpassed $3.6 billion, despite the sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

In its "World Investment Report" issued on Tuesday, UNCTAD said that Iran was able to make this breakthrough, even though many states witnessed a decline in foreign direct investment in 2010. For example, FDI fell sharply in the United Arab Emirates, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, India, Qatar, and Kuwait in 2010, the UNCTAD report stated.

The FDI flow into Iran in 2010 increased around 20 percent compared to 2009, when it stood at $3 billion, and witnessed a tremendous growth of 139 percent since 2008, when it stood at $1.6 billion, UNCTAD said.

Iran was among the few countries which witnessed FDI growth in 2009 and 2010.

In 2010, Iran attracted almost $11.9 billion worth of finances from abroad, of which $3.6 billion was FDI, $7.4 billion came from international commercial bank loans, and around $900 million came from loans and projects from international development banks.

The report also noted that Iran's ranking on the UNCTAD Doing Business list rose 13 places in 2010 to 129th in the world.

Global FDI flows increased slightly in 2010, reaching $1.24 trillion -- a growth of 4.9 percent compared to 2009 -- but still less than the level in 2008.

According to the UNCTAD report, the FDI flows at the end of 2010 were still 15 percent below their pre-crisis average of $1.472 trillion and nearly 37 percent below their peak in 2007 of $1.971 trillion.

However, UNCTAD forecasts that the recovery of FDI flows will continue in 2011 and will reach 1.4 to 1.6 trillion dollars this year and rise to $1.7 trillion in 2012.