World resolved to continue investing in Iran despite Trump
Tehran, Iran, October 15
By Mehdi Sepahvand - Trend:
International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said Saturday that there is no change in its policy with regard to funds to Iran based on cues from the US.
"We see no reason to change anything in the guidelines that we have received from the (IMF) Board and continue to operate in the same manner," Lagarde said at a news conference in Washington.
She was responding to a question on the new policy of US President Donald Trump who has strongly urged the IMF and World Bank not to provide loans or funds to Iran.
"We operate with 189 members and we only provide support and enter into program negotiations when a country asks for it," Lagarde said.
On Friday, Trump declared his view of the JCPOA, declaring that he would not certify Iran’s compliance with the deal. The move paves the way for Congress to put new restrictions on Iran.
The fact that Trump decertified Iran’s compliance with the nuclear agreement, aka Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), is not likely to leave a major impact on foreign investment in Iran, a finance market expert has told Trend.
The US won’t be posing nuclear-related sanctions on Iran, because doing so would render Washington in violation of the deal, Alireza Mohammadi noted.
"What was obvious in Trump’s Friday speech was that the US does not have anything to say about the nuclear deal, especially since the UN watchdog has approved Iran’s compliance with JCPOA. However, if any new sanctions are posed, they will most likely not address Iran’s economic sector."
Most of Trump’s Friday speech focused on denouncing Iran’s political influence in its neighborhood. Accusing Iran of sponsoring terrorism and violating the nuclear deal, Trump threatened in particular that Washington will adopt "tough sanctions" on the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC).
In the meantime, the US Treasury announced it had put under sanctions a number of companies affiliated with the IRGC.
Since the implementation of JCPOA in 2015, Iran has managed to attract $14 billion worth of foreign investment, Mohammad Khazaei, the head of the Organization for Investment, Economic and Technical Assistance of Iran (OIETAI) announced on Saturday.
According to a report published by OIETAI in early April, after the implementation of the nuclear accord with world powers, Iran has set its sights on implementing $50 billion worth of foreign finance.
Khazaei noted that $12 billion of the attracted finance have been in the form of foreign direct investment while the rest has been allocated in other forms.
"According to the Sixth Five-Year Development Plan (2017-22), the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance and the Central Bank of Iran are obligated to attract at least $3 billion in foreign investments each year," he added.
World leaders and dignitaries did not hesitate to denounce Trump’s new move on Iran. A few hours after the US president’s speech, Hillary Clinton has said Trump’s initiative is "very dangerous".
"First of all, it basically says America’s word is not good. That even in the absence of evidence that Iran is not complying with the Iran nuclear deal, this president is going to abandon it," she said.
"Secondly, it once again gives Iran an advantage. If Iran is complying, which all the evidence is, then all of a sudden, instead of working to isolate Iran, on every issue, we are giving Iran the spotlight, the aggrieved party spotlight. That makes us look foolish and small and plays right into Iranian hands."
Also in a statement issued on Friday, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said Trump’s speech "once again underlines the inadmissibility of using aggressive and threatening rhetoric in international relations" and that such language was "doomed to fail."
Former British foreign secretary Jack Straw reacted to the speech by saying: "An appalling decision by a US President willfully ignorant of the reality of Iran, and of the fact that Iran has complied with the JCPOA."
In the meantime, the Director General of the IAEA, Yukiya Amano, confirmed once again that the Islamic Republic of Iran is honoring all it nuclear-related commitments under the nuclear deal.
United Nations Secretary General António Guterres also in a statement called for keeping Iran nuclear deal.