Iranian Vice-President Ali Akbar Salehi downplayed the effects of falling oil prices on the country’s determination to make further progress, saying the trend is rather an opportunity for Tehran to wash off its economic dependence on crude revenues.
“We have learned how to deal with such issues and continue our progress in such a way that only 35% of the country’s next (Iranian) year (which starts on March 21) budget will rely on oil revenues; this is an opportunity for us to have endogenous economy without any reliance on oil, as said by Supreme Leader,” Salehi said in Tehran on Friday.
Ali Akbar Salehi
“We will certainly go past this crisis well, and although it causes us some problems, if a nation wants to defend its independence, it should certainly pay its price; these are the others who don’t have anything but oil to manage their life (and they should worry, not us),” he added.
Salehi expressed confidence that the plots to decrease oil prices would backfire on their masterminds who would soon face problems whose settlement would be difficult.
In relevant remarks in December, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said exports of crude was just one of Iran’s sources of revenue and the country could live up without oil sales and through exports of its rich mineral resources, modern industries, and talented people.
“We have different methods and scenarios to run the country under different circumstances and we will not forget which countries are conspiring to reduce oil prices,” Larijani said during a visit to Syria.
He said that the same countries conspired against Iran in the 1980s when Iran was at war with Iraq.
“It would be a mistake if they (certain governments) imagine that they can change the strategic situation of the (Middle East) region through oil (price),” said Larijani.
In early March, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei in a meeting with economic activists, elites and state officials in Tehran explained the root cause of Iran’s turn to the Resistance Economy as well as the specifications, features and components of such an economic model.
Ayatollah Khamenei elaborated on the reasons and incentives for the adoption of the economy of resistance, and said, “Abundant material and non-material capacities of the country, treatment of chronic and lasting economic problems, confrontation against sanctions and immunizing the country’s economy against global economic crises” are the reasons why such a model should be practiced in Iran.
He further noted that the components of the resistance economy are “creating movement and dynamicity in the country’s economy and improving macroeconomic indicators”, “ability to resist against threatening factors”, “reliance on internal capacities”, adoption of a “Jihadi approach”, “people-centeredness”, “reforming consumption patterns”, “campaign against corruption” and adoption of “knowledge-based approach”.
Ayatollah Khamenei referred to the sanctions imposed by the western powers against Iran due to its peaceful nuclear program, and said the country should strengthen its economy in a way that no boycott and embargo could ever leave a negative impact on it so easily.