World  Business and Economic Analysis 


  • Bright future on Iran-France relations


  • British firm lifts ban on Iran’s turbines




    A British firm has lifted ban on delivery of two turbines sent by Iran’s oil industry for repair and maintenance, official says.

    Mr. Darioush Amirsardari Goudarzi told Mehr News on Saturday that two turbines had been sent to Britain to be repaired before sanctions went effective, however, sanctions put a ban on both turbine delivery to Iran; “negotiations with the British firm after removal of sanctions removed the ban and now we expect to receive turbines within upcoming weeks,” he added.

    Still in a relevant story, Ali Karder, deputy-oil minister and NIOC head had told Mehr New earlier in November that Iran would receive oil money frozen in British banks within months after unfreezing the accounts; “British Petroleum will soon be paying NIOC fully the oil money once out of the access of the industry,” he had said.
    In line with lifting ban on oil industry key facilities strategic to South Pars phases, Asian and European companies will contribute to progress of projects in South Pars; Alireza Ebadi, a contractor of 20th and 21st phases told Mehr News that French and Spanish firms would also join the trend; German giant Siemens will also be a contributor, Pars Oil and Gas Co. officials told the press.

    With sanctions lifted on oil industry facilities, contractors have placed orders with the European companies for ethane recovery turboexpanders, a key machinery in South Pars 19th, 20th, and 21st phases.

  • British Trade Delegation Due in Tehran


     British Secretary of State for Business, Innovation, and Skills Sajid Javid expressed UK support for Iran’s bid to join the World Trade Organization, announcing his plans to lead a delegation of businesspeople to Tehran in April.

    During a meeting with Iran’s Chargé d'Affaires Mohammad Hassan Habibollahzadeh in London on Friday, Javid hailed the opportunities in the Iranian market and described the Islamic Republic as one of world's emerging markets.

    The business secretary said UK backs Iran to join the WTO, noting that an economic delegation will pay a visit to Tehran soon.

    Executives from across all spheres of trade, including oil, gas, financial services, infrastructure, and engineering sectors, will be accompanying Javid on the trip.

    The Iranian official, for his part, said Tehran would take the necessary measures to provide appropriate services to British companies to help facilitate their participation in the economic projects in Iran.

    Habibollahzadeh underlined that the removal of banking restrictions following the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) would encourage bilateral trade and investment.

    Early in March, UK Export Finance, the country’s export credit agency, and the Export Guarantee Fund of Iran, affiliated to the Ministry of Commerce, signed a memorandum of understanding on insurance coverage and financing of traders to facilitate exports and trade exchanges between the two countries.

    According to Financial Times, Javid said that London should make the best use of Iran’s opportunities as the future of the country as a trading nation cannot solely depend on “familiar trading partners.”

    “We can’t afford to stick with what we know. We have to secure new markets for British goods, new sources of foreign investment. Trade opens doors. It provides a platform on which to build diplomatic relations. It creates influence and leverage when it comes to negotiation and builds a bulwark against political instability.”

    Keywords: Iran,Investment,British,Trade delegation

  • Cabinet ministers to ratify new oil contracts models



    Petroleum Minister Bijan Zangeneh said here on Monday that the cabinet members are scheduled to approve of new models of oil contracts in the next two days.

    Zangeneh made the remarks on the sidelines of a ceremony on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of foundation of National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC).

    Once the contracts are ratified, he said, the executive phases of the contracts would be finalized.

    Petroleum minister reiterated that in the first round of the international oil project tenders, several plans would not be announced and they would be introduced gradually.

    President Hassan Rouhani took part Monday in a ceremony on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of foundation of NIGC.

    National Iranian Gas Company was established in 1965.

    Today's session was aimed at presenting the capabilities of gas industry in the international and national arenas and the important role it has played in national economy. The role of gas in improving the environment and lifestyle in Iran during the past 50 years was also examined.

  • Certain Iranian Law Tips for the Foreign Traders/Investors...


    • Iran is a party to New York Convention[2] ("Convention"). Therefore for dispute resolutions, in addition to the Convention, it is recommended to use Iranian arbitration such as Tehran Regional Arbitration Centre (TRAC) and Arbitration Center of Iran Chamber (ACIC), which are applying UNCITRAL Rules. There has not been any history of encountered special difficulties in enforcing the enforcement of Convention awards under the Iranian Code of Civil Practice.
    • With the JCPOA, transfer of funds among EU persons, entities or bodies, including EU financial and credit institutions, and non-listed Iranian persons, entities or bodies, including Iranian financial and credit institutions, are permitted. The authorization or notification requirements for fund transfers are no longer applicable. On the other hand, there are still certain authorization procedures to be accomplished in case of transfer of the profits of a foreign investment company in Iran under the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Act ("Foreign Investment Act")[3].
    • Investing via Foreign Investment Act is recommended to the foreign investors. Foreign investors in Iran are subject to the same amount of taxes with the Iranians and tax exemption of 80% by the Direct Taxation Law is ensured for 4 years in respect to all the industrial investments. Foreign legal entities residing abroad are subject to taxes at the flat rate of 25% in respect of the aggregate taxable income derived from the operation of their investment in Iran or from the commercial activities performed by them, directly or through their agencies in Iran.

    At the Davos in early 2014, President Rouhani declared that Iran is open for business and said that over the next three decades, Iran could become a top-10 global economy. Many dismissed this claim as a pipe-dream, but today, with the recent developments, it is likely to become a reality.


  • CI Says Iran Outlook ‘Stable’

    Capital Intelligence Ratings (CI Ratings), the international credit rating agency, announced that it has affirmed Iran’s long-term foreign and local currency sovereign ratings of ‘BB-’, and its short-term foreign and local currency sovereign ratings of ‘B’. The outlook for Iran’s ratings remains ‘stable’.
    CPI Financial reported on Sunday the ratings reflect the improved short- to medium-term outlook for the economy following the recent lifting of international economic and financial sanctions related to the country’s nuclear program. As a result, Iran has begun to repatriate previously frozen external financial assets, export more hydrocarbons, and re-access international financial and banking markets. The removal of sanctions has also facilitated trade diversification, thereby improving the country’s medium-term economic growth prospects.
    CI Ratings expects the combination of higher oil production, lower costs for trade and financial transactions, as well as restored access to foreign assets to support real GDP growth of about 3.8 % in FYE 2017-18. Improved terms of trade and renewed access to foreign assets and capital are also expected to increase the stability of the exchange rate and possibly help contain inflation, bringing it down to around 6% in FYE 2018, compared to a record high of 40% in 2013 when President Hassan Rouhani was elected.  
    Public finances are expected to improve as well, albeit at a slower pace in view of the steep decline in oil prices since mid-2014, and amid fierce competition for market share, especially with (P)GCC member states. The budget is expected to post a small deficit in 2016, and to register a small surplus of 0.5 % of GDP in FYE 2017-18, based on the assumption of average oil prices of $50 a barrel.
    Iran’s public debt remains low and official foreign assets remain sizeable, estimated by CI Ratings to be equivalent to around 14.5 months of imports of goods and services and around 12 times as high as external debt payments falling due in 2016, although there is still some ambiguity regarding the liquidity and usability of these assets.

    Sovereign Ratings Constrained

    CI reckons the internal political situation is reasonably stable, and a victory for supporters of the current government in recent legislative elections has raised the prospect of greater economic reform going forward. Geopolitical risk remains a material rating factor, however, given the escalating conflict in neighboring Iraq, as well as in Syria and Yemen, and in addition to the ongoing tension with the (P)GCC member states, namely Saudi Arabia.
    Notwithstanding the above positive developments, Iran’s sovereign ratings remain constrained by the heavy reliance on oil (the price of which is currently below the break-even fiscal level), by the limited disclosure of data, and fundamental weaknesses in the economy which have been aggravated by the long period of economic sanctions. The ratings are also constrained by continued expenditure rigidity, as well as the weak financial system, institutional shortcomings and complex internal politics.
    The outlook for the ratings is ‘stable’. This indicates that Iran’s sovereign ratings are likely to remain unchanged within the next 12 months provided that key metrics evolve as envisioned in CI Ratings’ baseline scenario and no other credit quality concerns arise.
    The ‘stable’ outlook balances the projected positive outcome of lifting the sanctions against the prolonged period of low oil prices and the concerns of spillover from the conflict in neighboring countries.

  • Companies Must Move Quicker for a Slice of Iran



    A quiet but collective bubble of excitement could be felt in the top executive floors of some of the largest multinational companies in the world when sanctions against Iran were lifted last month.
    Admittedly, the range of excitement differed depending on which country or region the enterprise originated from. The excitement was strongest amongst global and regional CEOs of some of the largest companies in Europe and Asia; countering that excitement was many chief executives of US and Chinese companies–for many different reasons, wrote Damien Duhamel for the Dubai-based weekly business magazine Arabian Business.
    Duhamel is the CEO and managing partner at Solidiance–a management consulting services company, headquartered in Singapore and focused on the Asian market. Below you can read part of the article.
    First, one must understand the immense opportunity that Iran presents–to understand just how high the stakes are and why so many C-level executives across the globe are salivating.
    With a GDP of approximately $1.4 trillion, Iran currently is home to 1.5% of the world’s GDP and is the 18th largest economy in the world–placing it between Turkey and Australia.
    Iran’s economy is also much more sustainable than the “hottest” emerging Asian and Middle East economies. Many of Asia’s emerging countries are still focused on pulling themselves out of an agriculture-based economy, and the Arab Persian Gulf states’ wealthiest nations are working hard to move away from an oil-based economy.  
    Iran already has a very solid infrastructure and industrial base enabling it to kick-start its economic catchup. It already boasts the second largest proven natural gas reserves and the fourth largest proven oil reserves in the world and is also home to a well-balanced and diversified economy, closer to that of the world’s most industrialized nations.
    Oil and gas contribute 25% of the country’s wealth, while the automotive, agriculture, manufacturing and mining industries contribute to 10% each.
    While some of the world’s biggest companies withdrew from “the race for Iran” five years ago, Chinese companies continued without looking back.
    Over the past decade, China capitalized on Iran’s estrangement with the global economy by securing primary positions in both oil and non-oil sectors of Iran’s economy. However, Iranians now crave for Europe’s high quality consumer brands and industrial goods.
    The end of sanctions means the Chinese must now compete with international players and are sure to lose some of their inflated market share.
    European and Asian multinationals have not enjoyed the unrestricted access Chinese firms have had; they are still well-positioned to outpace their North American counterparts.
    Quality European and Asian brands will thrive in Iran, so long as strong relationships are built with the country’s most competent partners.
    Due to stringent compliance regulations in the US, American Fortune 500 CEOs watched impatiently as their European and Asian competitors travelled freely in and out of Iran over the past months to gauge the market and reestablish long-lost relationships. As such, the Americans have sidelined their best corporate entities, and inevitably, the Americans will be last to the Iranian dinner table.
    When it comes to Iran opening up to the world, the first-mover advantage will carry with it significant advantages. Speed is paramount; this is true for many markets, but rings especially true in Iran.
    The starting pistol may have officially gone off on January 16th, but there is a big difference between companies preparing to go in and those that have not yet started the process.
    Careful entry development and growth road map execution with strong partners will define a company’s success in this exciting and newly reopened market.

    Keywords: Iran,Investment

  • cryptocurrencies is booming in Iran




    Public interest in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin is booming in Iran as a report estimates that unregulated exchanges are engaged in nearly $200 million worth of trade for digital currencies everyday.

    The Iranian government has yet to recognize cryptocurrencies for local trade and platforms use normal authentication procedures to be able to process transactions.
    The report said that the number of investors with activity in the local crypto market had exceeded one million, adding that daily trading volume in a total of 20 platforms amounts to 50 trillion rials ($200 million). many of the people engaged in trade for cryptocurrencies were retail investors who have been discouraged by a recent drop in the value of trade in theTehranStockExchange(TSE). people were taking the risk of buying a bitcoin to compensate for the losses they have suffered in the TSE, where main index TEDPIX has dropped to 1.22 million points, down from over 2 million recorded in mid-summer.
    That comes as the global daily trading volume for cryptocurencies has reached nearly $200 billion in a market valued at around $1.4 trillion where the dominant currency bitcoin has surged to over $57,000.


  • Czech Delegation in Iran for Mining Cooperation




    A 30-strong business delegation from the Czech Republic, made up mainly of representatives of the country’s mining sector, visited Tehran on Sunday and met with members of Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture to explore potential avenues of cooperation and trade.
    The delegation was headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Martin Tlapa, our sister publication Donya-e-Eqtesad reported.
    “The purpose of this visit is to cooperate with Iranian firms in the mining industry,” said the Czech official, emphasizing that the European country’s industry players are ready to strike deals with their Iranian counterparts with the full support of Czech central bank and Export Guarantee and Insurance Corporation.
    Tlapa pointed to some of the signed economic agreements between Iran and the Czech Republic, including a 50-megawatt power plant construction project worth €50 million, as examples of successful cooperation between Tehran and Prague. He explained that the required turbines for the project are being manufactured by the Czech Republic and that Iran will also be provided with the construction technology.
    “The Czech Republic can meet the Iranian market’s requirements in the fields of petrochemicals, agriculture and food, auto manufacturing, railroad production and mineral extraction and processing,” he said.
    Establishment of direct flights between Tehran and Prague, cooperation in developing Iran’s infrastructure and undertaking joint ventures in the country’s gas sector were some of the other potential economic sectors discussed by the foreign official.
    Tlapa also met with his Iranian counterpart, Majid Takht-Ravanchi, on Sunday. The trade delegation travelled to South Khorasan Province on Monday to attend a business forum alongside the province’s economic players.
    Mohammad Reza Bahraman, the head of Iran Mining House, described the untapped potential in Iran’s mining sector as “significant”, and said the Mining Act of the Islamic Republic of Iran allows foreign firms to hold up to 100% stake in the country’s mines and mining industrial firms, offering a good opportunity for Czech investors.
    Emphasizing that the government intends to boost the output of Iran’s mining sector, the Iranian official noted that the industry has a “pressing need for foreign investments”.
    “Czech companies’ investments in the sector can be highly beneficial for both sides,” he added.
    Bahman Eshqi, secretary-general of TCCIMA, said the current annual trade value between Iran and the Czech Republic is too low considering the two countries’ industrial capabilities and longstanding ties. The figure stood at about $52 million in 2015.
    The official pointed to sectors such as oil and gas, transportation, auto manufacturing, pharmaceutical production and tourism as potential areas for boosting mutual cooperation.

  • Danish Firm to Help Develop Wind Projects


    Danish wind energy company Vestas has started a new round of cooperation in Iran by helping generate electricity from wind, transferring the knowhow of wind power plants and turbines, and integrating wind networks.
    Referring to the fact that 100% of Denmark’s electricity needs are supplied by wind power, Inigo Sabater, the company’s acting head, said in a workshop on wind power and management of power distribution network in Iran that the main source of energy in 34 countries is wind power, Mehr News Energy reported.
    “This is while wind power industry is nascent in Iran, but there are currently good opportunities for developing the capacity of wind power output,” he added.
    As the only global energy company dedicated exclusively to wind energy, Vestas’s core business is the development, manufacturing, sale and maintenance of wind power.
    Vestas has offices in 24 countries and five strong regional sales business units in Northern Europe, Central Europe, Americas, Mediterranean and Asia Pacific and China.
    Sabater noted that under the present circumstances, the production of electricity in wind power plants is economically viable. Akbar Shabanikia, deputy head of Renewable Energy Organization of Iran, also said the organization is currently updating Iran’s wind energy encyclopedia, which is projected to take a year.
    “The wind encyclopedia is being designed employing satellite data … It can provide sufficient information for investors who aim to venture in Iran’s wind industry,” he added.

  • Delegating development projects to private sector, a main policy of Iran


     Iran’s Economy Minister and Finance  Ali Tayyebnia stressed that  entrusting of the country’s development projects to the private sector as one of the main policies of the government.
    According to the report, Tayyebnia made the remarks in the 59th government and private sector joint meeting.
    “This year, the country’s Management and Planning Organization is committed to hand over 1000 development projects to the private sector” he said.
    The minister believed that most of the country’s economic problems stem from low private sector activity rate and that merging Export Guarantee Fund with Bank Saderat would be a principled and effective solution to help and provide better services to the private sector.
    He urged the private sector to help the government in identifying target countries in terms of economic cooperation and investment potential.
    The minister also said, “We must focus on countries that are inclined to finance our projects through direct investment in Iran.”

  • Deputy Minister Urges Banks to Strive for 12% CAR


    Iranian banks must commit to increasing their capital and reaching a capital adequacy ratio of at least 8%, says a deputy economy minister.

    "A minimum capital adequacy of 8% and reaching a capital adequacy of 12% must be pursued by the banks," Hossein Qazavi was quoted as saying by

    "Privately-owned banks must improve their capital adequacy by selling their stocks and increasing the capital of state-owned banks should be the function of the government."

    The deputy economy minister for banking and insurance affairs says budgetary constraints have indeed imperiled government moves to help increase the capital of banks. "But I hope that amendments to the budget law of 2016-17 which were approved by parliament will be implemented and capital adequacy of the banks will increase."

    The amendments to the budget law of 2016-17, the implementation of which was officially proposed by President Hassan Rouhani in early November, contain measures to increase banks' capital and settle their debts.

    According to another deputy minister of economy Shapour Mohammadi, the government has several plans to increase the capital adequacy of banks including cash injections with the help of foreign exchange resources of the Central Bank of Iran.

    "It was proposed that proceeds from selling the shares of state companies could be utilized based on Article 44 of the Islamic Republic of Iran Constitution [which calls for the privatization of state firms]. These proceeds may be used to increase the capital of state banks which has won Majlis approval,” Mohammadi had said in June.

    According to Qazavi, there is also the issue of several privately-owned banks in which the government holds a stake. If these banks choose to offer their stocks, he says, it should be "natural for the government to help in increasing their capital."

    The official says in light of budgetary limitations, it seems that the government is willing to reduce its role in banks and let the capital market play its role in increasing their capital.

    The main purpose of the amendments to the 2016-17 budget law is to allow the government to settle its debts to the banking sector by using the CBI foreign exchange resources. The government will have the authority to repay up to 450 trillion rials ($14 billion) of its debts to lenders through these resources.

    Qazavi notes that when international banks want to collaborate with their Iranian peers, they look into their financial ratios, namely capital adequacy, non-performing loans, return on assets and stocks.

    He, however, stresses that when a bank or country wishes to work with Iran on a large scale it should gauge the country within the framework of its extraordinary circumstances. He quickly adds that this does not mean the capital adequacy ratios of Iranian banks must not improve.

    "This is a necessity. But in general, hurdles must be removed by way of improving or reforming the structure of bank's financial statements and giving the other side (foreign banks) the necessary assurances."  

    Qazavi adds that in the case of government-owned banks, foreign banks can be swayed even if the bank's capital adequacy is below 8% because the government would be its stockholder "and if problems arise, they know that the government is there to help the bank(s)."

    Production Loans Lagging

    A deputy minister of industries, mining and trade has criticized the banks' performance in allocating loans to promote production in the country.

    "Unfortunately, even though 90 cases were sent to private banks to receive loans to improve production, the banks have paid no attention," Reza Rahmani said in the 62nd meeting of the government and the private sector.

    Pointing to the CBI governor Valiollah Seif's promise of delivering 16 trillion rials ($499.4 million) worth of loans to the ailing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the official said "so far, only 11 trillion rials ($343.3 million) has been paid to 16,194 industrial units."

    Rahmani recalled that the CBI head had promised that "if any SME does not get the funding by the time the 16 trillion rials has been paid out, the volume of loans will increase."

  • Do you know Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Act (English) in Iran?



    We Welcome Investment

    Iran has a small, highly globalised economy, with a well-established FDI sector generating significant exports across business sectors.

    Our pro-business attitude enables companies to set up swiftly, with minimum red tape, in a connected environment. From green field sites and business parks to edgy architectural offices - we offer the right property solutions to get our clients up and running.


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    “The funding is crucial to the continued growth of the business. Worldbusinessyear investment and finance consultancy  were fantastic to work with and we would highly recommend other businesses who are seeking funding to expand to speak to them.”

  • Due Diligence for your business partner in Iran


    Due Diligence
    Who to trust is a key business decision and there is a lack of data available to normal channels in Iran. World Business Year's confidential Due Diligence service allows our members to conduct high level checks to ensure your good governance.

    Individual Check

    Individuals are discreetly checked out for credibility, reputation and any potential 'red flags'.
    Company Check

    Corporate requirements need confidence in supply chain or distributors, professional services or potential partners. This check is done carefully and comprehensively.
    Data Check

    Critical data for fundamental business decisions must be checked by a third party or there is a risk of inaccuracies causing embarrassment or failure.

    Keywords:Due Diligence ,Invest ,Iran

  • Economic Renaissance in Iran and Reopening of the Economy to Global Business



    by : Dr.  MehrdadSyadatnasab

    Commercial Attaché of Iran Embassy, Pretoria, South Africa


    Iran is an important and historical country with ancient civilization in the Middle East Region, situated in strategic location, with a population of about 80 million and it is the world’s 17th-most-populous market. Economy of Iran is the eighteenth largest economy in the world by purchasing power parity (PPP). In fact, Iran is a very young nation and it is not only about quantity, but also quality.
    Iran, as a major energy producer in the Middle East holds 10% of the world’s oil reserves (second largest oil producer) and second largest reserves of natural gas (15% of the world's total) and it has the potential to become an energy superpower.
    The economic fundamentals are strong. It’s been described as the Germany of the Middle East, an educated workforce, developed Infrastructure and a proud tradition of manufacturing with 7 Free Trade-Industrial Zones and 30 Special Economic Zones. The country has competent farmers, carmakers, drug firms and a fairly sophisticated service sector with abundant potential in Engineering & Technical services (721 Techno-Engineering projects have been executed in 42 countries by Iranian companies over the last 10 years), making it less dependent on oil, now at rock-bottom prices, than other big producers such as the Persian Gulf states.
    The economy of Iran has been hit by sanctions and extensive trade restrictions in recent years, yet the nuclear deal has opened a clear path for total obliteration of sanction policy against the country. Although being sanctioned has been a big issue for the economy, but we can address this issue also as an opportunity than a threat.
    After years of intensive negotiations have finally cleared all the misunderstandings around Iran's nuclear activities and In July 2015, Iran signed a historic deal with the P5+1 group of international mediators and now are taking the next step towards integrating more deeply into the global economy.
    But foreign companies began flocking to Iran even before the deal was signed. In 2015, Tehran hosted a flurry of trade delegations and signed new contracts to boost cooperation and elaborating various opportunities in tourism, transportation, technology, foodstuff, aviation and machinery as well as oil and gas and other sectors. (Around 60 foreign delegations visited Iran in 2015 that at least a dozen were from Europe.)
    In recent report the IMF noted that "prospects for 2016/17 are brighter, owing to the prospective lifting of economic sanctions. Higher oil production, lower costs for trade and financial transactions, and restored access to foreign assets, are expected to lift real GDP of Iran to about 4–5.5 percent in 2016."
    As the largest untapped market with a very young population, the lifting of sanctions will bring around a host of new opportunities to foreign businesses with a prior presence in Iran as well as those interested in entering the Iranian market. New Iranian legislations such as the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Act have come into force in an attempt to attract more foreign investment, removing previous restrictions on the percentage of foreign shareholding in Iran, and the possibility of registering an Iranian company with 100% foreign capital as well as unlimited transfer of capital and dividends where applicable.
    The country has one of the lowest levels of external debt in the world, which makes it more resistant to global shocks. (While the external debt to GDP is less than 5 percent in Iran, the number goes to around 50 percent for Turkey). Considering the substantial amount of not-satiated demand in almost every sector, an industrial base which requires renovation and rich natural resources mainly underutilized due to investment deficiency in recent years, Iran has extra ordinary expansion and investment potentials in the fields of Oil, Gas, Petrochemicals, Mines, Industries, Agriculture and Service sectors and it’s easy to see why investors and international companies are getting very excited about Iran.
    At the end it is worth to mention that after years of economic isolation, the prospect of the world’s last major frontier market opening up in 2016 and we can say Economic Renascence are started and “Iran’s Golden Times” are not far away.

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  • Entering Iran's Stock Market


    With a market cap of about $90 billion, Iran’s stock market is fifth-largest in the Middle East. The lifting of sanctions allows the country to compete for investor attention with Saudi Arabia, which opened the region’s biggest stock market to direct foreign ownership seven months ago.
    While investing on Tehran’s bourse was already legal for many international investors, financial sanctions placed on the banking system made it almost impossible to transfer money in and out of the country. The majority of those sanctions have been removed after an international deal over Iran’s nuclear ambitions, allowing the nation’s banks to reconnect to the Swift system for international financial transactions.
    Although buying shares hasn’t been prohibited for Europeans, investing in certain industries, such as energy, has been off limits.

    How can international investors enter?

    There are two ways to access Iranian equities: invest directly, or go through local funds, said Parham Gohari, co-founder of Frontier Partners, a professional-services firm advising multinationals on entering Iran.
    Investing directly requires the use of a broker based in Tehran, as well as a foreign trading license and investment code from the Securities and Exchange Organization. The code is needed to buy and sell securities in Iran.
    The second way is to use a local fund. Several companies have been preparing foreign investment funds for Iran in anticipation of the lifting on sanctions. An index-linked ETF for foreigners already exists and a small fund exposed to sanctions-proof companies started in December.
    “There are two or three bodies involved if you want to get through the direct route," Gohari said from Dubai. When using a local fund, “you would have to do your homework and understand the performance of some of these companies over the last few years," he said.
    If you have any comments or suggestions Please let us know to send e-mail:

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  • Entrepreneur of the Week: Mona Tavassoli, founder of Mompreneurs Middle East


    Mona Tavassoli, our latest Entrepreneur of the Week, has elevated the concept of mompreneurship in the region by actively working on helping more than 500 Dubai-based female business owners to successfully balance the roles of mother and entrepreneur.

    A peaceful Middle East through women’s empowerment is the “why” behind everything Tavassoli does, both personally and professionally. She adds that empowered mothers raise empowered children and opines that entrepreneurship is one of the best means to empower women.

    This 33-year-old Iranian launched MomSouq, an online marketplace for baby and children’s products, in 2012. It was a decision inspired by motherhood.

    Less than a year later, she launched Mompreneurs Middle East, a business-to-business platform that caters to female entrepreneurs in the region, helping them to promote and grow their businesses.

    “Our slogan is ‘bigger circle collectively’. Individually, maybe we are small companies, but together we have a huge community of mompreneurs who support each other,” she said in an interview with Arabian Business StartUp last year.

    Mompreneurs Middle East's vision is to create a community of mom entrepreneurs where information sharing and mentorship lead to collective success of all members of the group.

    “The underlying belief is that collectively mompreneurs will be stronger and better able to compete in today's business environment,” Tavassoli adds.

    The primary focus of Mompreneurs Middle East is education. The group offers Mompreneur Rising, a two-month entrepreneurship course, to its members. They also facilitate mentoring initiatives to give the opportunity to mompreneurs to learn from executives and well-established women leaders.

    “We also understand the difference between achievement and success,” she says. “Success is a feeling that differs from one person to another. We help mompreneurs to define success and to not forget their priorities in life. Their happiness and their family’s happiness are paramount, and reflect heavily in their business. We give them tools and techniques to be mindful of their priorities.”

    In 20014 this mother of two and a serial entrepreneur found the time to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, under the World Peace through Women's Empowerment banner, an endeavour sponsored by the University of Wollongong in Dubai.

    The organisers managed to raise AED 22,000 ($6,000) to secure two years' stationery supplies for 24,000 female students in 12 schools in Afghanistan.

  • EU banks start re-engaging with Iran


    The Financial Times says several European banks including Belgium’s KBC, Germany’s DZ Bank and Austria’s Erste Bank have started handling transactions with Iran.
    The Financial Times says several European banks including Belgium’s KBC, Germany’s DZ Bank and Austria’s Erste Bank have started handling transactions with Iran.

    European banks have reportedly started to re-engage with Iran after over two months from the removal of sanctions against the country.

    The Financial Times reported on Sunday that Belgium’s KBC, Germany’s DZ Bank and Austria’s Erste Bank that they have started handling transactions on behalf of European clients doing business in Iran.

    Nevertheless, bigger European banks remain on the sidelines, “scarred by a string of multibillion-dollar fines for earlier sanctions breaches in Iran”, the FT added.

    KBC, Belgium’s biggest bank, has announced that it had “decided to support its well-established customers in its home markets” of Belgium, the Czech Republic and Slovakia “in their genuine trade with Iran, respecting all EU and US sanctions”.

    “Such support is restricted to trade only and always subject to an in-depth screening of each transaction and all parties concerned,” FT has quoted KBC as saying in a statement. “To this effect KBC indeed has developed correspondent relationships with several state-owned and private Iranian banks.”

    The daily has further quoted DZ Bank as announcing in a statement that it had started handling payments in euros via Iranian correspondent banks.

    “We have started on-boarding Iranian banks in terms of trade finance co-operation, according to standard procedures. Going forward we might also seek to build correspondent banking relationships,” the FT had quoted DZ Bank as saying in its statement.

    Both banks, it added, have emphasized that they have “checked” every payment involving Iran for sanctions compliance.

    Indications had been specifically growing lately that a legacy of hefty fines by the US on banks that are caught for violating Iran sanctions is deterring businesses from trading with Iran.

    Reports said last month that corporate leaders have already become frustrated over this even though the sanctions removal against Iran would have naturally meant the doors are open for investments in Iran.

    The failure specifically by European banks to play their due role in business with Iran has already provoked reactions from several EU leaders and business leaders.  

    British Prime Minister David Cameron in early March rebuked Barclays for hampering companies trying to export to Iran.

    Also, Airbus which sealed an agreement with Iran in January to sell over 100 new planes to the country, has called on EU banks to dispel fears of doing business with Iran.

کتاب عملیات بانکی در عرصه بین الملل -سرفصل ها،ضمائم ،توصیه صاحب‏نظران ارزی و مدیران ارشد بانکی

Investment Consulting &Project Finance


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