|  | 

Foreign Affairs

Iran winning economic battle with US with EU help: American Prof.

Tehran, Iran is defeating the US in the economic battle with the help of Europe and the world is becoming more and more indifferent toward the US attempts to annul the nuclear deal, said Juan Cole, Professor of History at the University of Michigan.

'Despite the significant economic problems Iran faces, and despite the real problems in unequal income distribution, Iran's economy is seeing bright spots that the Western press rarely admits,' Cole wrote in an article recently published in the Truth Dig website.

An excerpt of his article follows:

'In the year after international sanctions were lifted on the signing of the nuclear accord, spring 2016-spring 2017, the economy surged 16%. It is settling down now into a regular 4% a year growth or so and is trying to grow its non-oil economy. The recent stiffening of oil prices will also help.

'Any economic progress Iran makes is in the teeth of strong American opposition and a continued desire of Washington to keep Iran poor and weak.

'Just for an example of the challenge the Trump administration faces in isolating Iran economically, Iranian trade with Denmark grew 11% in 2017, but the kicker is that Iranian exports to Denmark grew nearly 38%, giving Iran a highly favorable balance of payments.

'Denmark is hardly Venezuela. It is a conservative, small northern European country that belongs to NATO. But like much of Europe it has embraced the 2015 nuclear deal, which removed international economic sanctions on Tehran.

'The Republicans in the US Congress have never accepted that deal and have tried to spike it by keeping US sanctions on Iran and, mafia-like, threatening third parties who trade with Iran. But the world increasingly just doesn't care.

'Denmark and Iran did $320 in trade last year and that is small potatoes compared to what the rest of Europe has in mind.'

'France, Belgium, Italy and other European countries are setting up state-backed Euro-denominated investment and trade pipelines that avoid US currency and banks.

'The Treasury Department has been using the dollar's status as the world's reserve currency to punish European companies that do business with Iran in dollars and using US banks and exchanges.

'But if all US instruments are avoided, then Treasury's Office of Foreign Asset Control (many of whose activities affect freedom of speech and association and are probably unconstitutional) has little recourse in international courts and is defanged.

'Italy alone is planning to invest $5 billion in Iran.

'This concerted European economic surge toward Iran has outraged and angered National Security Adviser HR McMaster as well as the Israeli, Saudi and UAE governments, who are hoping to convince the world to reestablish economic sanctions on Iran despite the JCPOA or nuclear accord.

'The argument that Iranian companies are owned by the Iranian military or Iran's paramilitary organizations is being met by a concerted Iranian push to divest its military of key economic enterprises as to reassure international investors.'

Source: Islamic Republic News Agency

The iran News Gazette is mainly concerned with news and information about the Arab region and also covers international issues. Its main objective is to provide reliable and verified information on the Arab region for publishing on the digital landscape.