Why work with Iran?
Is it still possible to work in Iran?
Iran, despite US sanctions, remains the lead country of the next eleven (N-11) identified by Goldman Sachs and economist Jim O’Neill, along with the BRICS, as the world’s largest economies in the 21st century (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_O%27Neill,_Baron_O%27Neill_of_Gatley#Next_Eleven)
Working in Iran means being present in a country with 78 million inhabitants, of which two thirds are under 35 and the average level of education is high.
It is a regional hub, the basis for reaching a market of 400 million consumers in the neighboring countries of the Middle East and in the former Soviet republics of Central Asia.
As in Europe, 90% of the companies is made up of small and medium-sized enterprises.
The agreement on the nuclear program, signed on 14 July 2015 between Tehran and the group of the five plus one (UN Security Council members and Germany) has not only redesigned the geopolitical scene in the Middle East but also had a significant impact in economic terms, despite the pressing of the United States that would prevent European companies from working in Iran.
Now, after the return of sanctions decided by the United States there is great expectation to see and understand what will happen.
The exemption for another six months granted to Italy and other Countries by USA will give time to Italian and European diplomacy to work alongside Iran and guarantee trade.
In the first decade of 2000, Iran grew by 5% per annum according to the World Bank; the big frost is over, next year it is expected to grow up to 7%.
The government wants to invest 15 billion euros in the coming years in transport: airports, ports, railways.
The car industry, which makes up 10% of Iran’s gross domestic product, has great ambitions.
Oil & Gas remains the basis of the Iranian economy and accounts for about 80% of exports and is the state’s primary source of income.
The government’s goal is to continue selling petroleum products to historic partners, without using the dollar, but needs international investment to modernize the plants.
Iran also has large reserves of gas (it is second only to Russia).
That’s why Europe should continue to work with Iran.
Italy, the first European partner
The “Made in Italy” is very well know and appreciated as all the European products.
That’s why Italian and European companies should seriously think about work in Iran.
In Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988) the Iranian population were victims of an attack without any notice.
Despite this, the major international leaders were deployed in support of Iraq.
Italy, instead, asked and obtained for its Parliament to block military supplies which had already been paid and built and which were to deliver to the to the Iraq Navy.
If Italy hadn’t done so, Iraq would’ve become the greatest naval power of the region and probably would’ve won the conflict.
This is just one of many reasons why the Iranian population is grateful and loves Italy.
Italy was one of the first European nations to resume economical contacts with Iran in late 1998.
Italian companies, especially the small-middle sized ones, continued working in Iran even during the period of economic sanctions, despite great difficulties.
Italy has today returned to be Iran’s first sales partner inside the EU: it’s certified by Eurostat statistics which report a record 1,2 billion euro in trade with Tehran.
The two nations, successors of the ancient Persia and Rome which have used culture in all its forms to be the fertile ground upon which to base their, have scored a new record, the last of many.
In fact, even the Maestro Riccardo Muti, chose the Iranian capital to host his latest concert homage to Verdi.
In 2019, as forecasted by SACE, the exports from Italy to Iran should increase to the maximum record of 2,5 -2,6 billion euros.