June 1, 2018
More than $59 billion in hard currency has left Iran during last two years, Islamic Parliament Research Center (IPRC) has disclosed.
According to IPRC, following the United States withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) or Tehran’s nuclear deal with world power, more billions are expected to leave Iran in the coming months.
IRPC has also said that $59 billion is a significant figure in Iran’s financial situation, a website close to the speaker of parliament, Khabar Online reported on Monday, May 28.
The capital that left Iran during past twelve months amounts to $39,200 billion which is equal to 83% of Iran’s current annual income from its non-oil exports.
IRPC has also revealed that $20,200 billion capital left the country in 2016.
“Unpredictability of the political and economic situation”, “lack of support for investments in general policies of the government”, “high risk of investment”, “difficulties in conducting business activities” and a trend of relocating to other countries, are the main reasons behind the flight of wealth from Iran.
Most of the people who transfer their money out of the country, aim to buy assets, including houses, and invest in banks and stock markets abroad, the report has noted.
It is not clear how much of the hard currency has been sent out of the country by the elite of the Islamic Republic. Current members of parliament and officials have alleged that officials of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s administration sent billions of dollars to Turkey, with the pretext of having a plan to stabilize currency rates.
Some diaspora based Iranian websites have alleged that the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps, IRGC, has taken billions of dollars out of the country to have a nest-egg in case of war or sanctions.
Meanwhile, IRPC’s report has cautioned that, following the flight of significant sums of money in the past two years, the country’s hard currency reserves shows a $16,300 billion decrease.
This means the government has sold hard currency on open market, most probably to meet its domestic financial obligations.
Immediately after recent crisis in Iran’s forex market, President Hassan Rouhani’s administration set a cap on the amount of foreign currency citizens can hold in cash, and sent police to patrol currency exchanges to crack down on black market currency trading.