IMF: Iran economy ‘rebounded strongly’ after lifting of sanctions

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Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says Iran’s economy has “rebounded strongly” over the first half of the year, while authorities are undertaking reforms to boost growth.

German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel, right, with Iran's Economy Minister Ali Tayebnia in Teheran on Oct. 3. / Reuters
German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel, right, with Iran’s Economy Minister Ali Tayebnia in Teheran on Oct. 3. / Reuters

In a statement issued on October 3 after a visit to Iran, IMF staff said oil production and exports “rebounded quickly” to presanction levels, as an array of international sanctions targeting Iran were lifted in January following a nuclear deal with world powers that curbed the country’s controversial nuclear program.

Meanwhile, “increased activity” in agriculture, car production, trade, and transport services has led the recovery in growth in the nonoil sector.

The government has followed “prudent” monetary and fiscal policies, helping to contain consumer inflation, and is implementing “far-reaching, ambitious, reforms” to support a sustained acceleration in growth, IMF staff also said.

Economic growth, adjusted for inflation, is projected to grow at an annual rate of at least 4.5 percent through 2017.

But IMF staff warned of emerging “vulnerabilities” that could erode Iran’s economic achievements, including a growing budget deficit and falling foreign exchange reserves.

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