Week in Brief 21.09.2018

CBI pushes exporters to sell foreign currencies

New foreign exchange rules have quite confused both exporters and importers in Iran. In order to keep the supply of foreign currencies in the country, the Central Bank of Iran has requested all exporters to offer their foreign currencies at the Nima Exchange Platform within three months after exporting their goods.

However, Iranian exporters who face serious difficulties in making their financial transactions with other countries, claim that three months of time is too short to be able to bring their foreign currency back to the country.

Several representatives from private sector have protested against the new regulation and say that there is no need to set such deadlines; sooner or later, all exporters will return their foreign money in order to keep production lines operative.

On the other hand, “real” private sector of the Iranian economy claims that this sector is in charge of only 20% of the total export. While the state-owned and quasi-sate-owned companies make 80% of the export.

So far, the government had little success in forcing the petrochemical companies to bring their foreign currencies back and offer at Nima platform. Petrochemical make the majority of Iranian export, after oil and these companies are mainly quasi-state-owned.

Annual petrochemical export is worth about 15 billion dollars. Natural gas condensates export brings another 15 billion dollars to the country.

Iran’s annual export is worth nearly 40 billion dollars. Of which about 6 billion USD comes from mineral products. The rest, i.e. 4 to 5 billion dollars, are goods exported by private sector.

Related article: Central Bank of Iran sets new regulations for foreign currency depositors