Iran Economy in Brief – No. 80

President Hassan Rouhani and his new Cabinet

On Sunday, The Parliament approved all the President Hassan Rouhani’s nominees for ministerial positions, only one was rejected, i.e. the candidate to Energy Ministry.

Although, many expected President Rouhani to appoint at least one female minister, but such did not happen. The President, however, has three female advisors: Massoumeh Ebtekar, vice-president in charge of women’s affairs; Laya Joneydi, vice-president for legal affairs, and Shahindokht Mowlaverdi, special advisor for citizens’ rights.

The list of 17 approved ministers and their votes is: Mohammad Javad Zarif, Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Confirmed 236-26; Amir Hatami, Ministry of Defense: Confirmed 261-10; Mahmoud Alavi, Intelligence Ministry: Confirmed 252-22; Abbas Akhoundi, Transport Ministry: Confirmed 188-75; Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi, Information and Communications Technology Ministry: Confirmed 152-120; Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, Oil Ministry: Confirmed 230-35; Mohammad Shariatmadari, Industries, Mine, and Trade Ministry: Confirmed 241-25; Mohammad Bathaei, Education Ministry: Confirmed 238-35; Abbas Salehi, Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance: Confirmed 242-25; Rahmani Fazli, Interior Ministry: Confirmed 250-25; Masoud Soltanifar, Ministry of Youth and Sports: Confirmed 225-39; Mahmoud Hojjati, Ministry of Agriculture: Confirmed 164-23; Ali Rabiei, Ministry of Labor: Confirmed 191-15; Hassan Ghazizadeh Hashemi, Ministry of Health and Medical Education: Confirmed 253-18; Alireza Avaie, Justice Ministry: Confirmed 244-18.

Quick loan for marriage

The Central Bank of Iran announced that only 24 days after the execution of the marriage loan urgency plan, 200 thousand loans have been issued by evelen banks. Based on figures from the Central Bank, so far 620 thousand people have applied for marriage loans. The huge demand has forced the Government to execute an urgent plan.

The Director of Credits at the Central Bank, Ali Ashghar Mir-Mohammad-Sadeghi, released the latest numbers regarding the urgency plan and said: “Before this plan, each month we issued a maximum of 80 loans. In this plan, priority has been given to less developed areas and 25% of the 200 thousand issued loans are for these areas”.

The Central Bank hopes to review and answer the remainder of the requests within five weeks. Eligible newlyweds can apply for a 100 million IRR ($3030) loan.

Related topic: Marriage among university students

Expansion of greenhouses in agriculture

The largest glass greenhouse in Iran will become operational in fall 2017 in Aras Free Zone, north-west of the country. This greenhouse is located on a 50 hectare plot, 31 hectares of which is roofed. Due to water limitations in Iran, hydroponic technology has been used to farm produce. The CEO of the Aras Tarla Amin Greenhouse Complex, Hossein Hazrati, said: “In the first phase of operation, 11 hectares of land was used to grow 4.5 thousand tons of tomatoes, 85% of which was exported to Russia, Qatar and Dubai. We expect the yield to increase to 14000 tons of produce once the total capacity becomes operational”.

Financing of this project was valued at 1600 billion IRR ($48.5m) and was equally carried out by Keshavarzi Bank and the private investor.

Happiness returns to Refah Chain Stores

The CEO of Refah Chain Stores has announced that in the first 9 months of their current financial year, sales have surpassed those of the previous year. “After two years, based on the designed strategic plan and the special campaign for Ramadan, we have introduced the ‘New Generation of Refah’ to people. We therefore hope that by the end of the current financial year i.e. 22nd October, we can achieve 80% growth in sales respect to a year ago”, said Farshid Golzadeh Kermani, CEO of Refah.

Refah chain stores were established in 1995 and have become one of the largest retailers in Iran.

Read more about Refah Chain Stores