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Iran Economic Forecast

Iran Economic Outlook

March 10, 2020

Economic prospects worsened over the past month, on the rapid spread of coronavirus in Iran and with the official death toll rising in recent weeks. The virus is weighing heavily on the transportation and tourism sectors, as government officials restricted travel in and out of highly affected areas. This comes after the U.S. implemented sanctions on Iran’s manufacturing and transportation sectors in January, which should be stunting the non-oil private sector. Exacerbating matters, crude oil production contracted nearly a quarter year-on-year in January, and at a slightly sharper rate than in December. Moreover, weaker factory activity in China due to the coronavirus, a breakdown of OPEC+ cooperation and a moderating global growth outlook have weighed heavily on oil prices since the start of the year, and should be dragging on government revenues.

Iran Economic Growth

In SH 2020, the economy is seen contracting again. The latest round of U.S. sanctions will deal a blow to the non-oil private sector, while the oil economy remains crippled by prior sanctions. Moreover, the Covid-19 outbreak will likely further constrict activity. Volatile oil prices poses a downside risk to the outlook. Panelists see the economy contracting 1.3% in SH 2020, which is down 0.7 percentage points from last month’s forecast. In SH 2021, the economy is seen growing 1.8%.

Iran Economy Data

2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Population (million)78.579.580.581.482.4
GDP per capita (USD)5,6424,9315,2745,635-  
GDP (USD bn)443392424459-  
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)4.6-1.313.43.8-  
Consumption (annual variation in %)-  -  -  -  -  
Unemployment Rate11.511.812.512.112.0
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-1.1-1.6-1.9-1.8-  
Public Debt (% of GDP)11.838.447.539.532.2
Money (annual variation in %)22.330.023.222.123.1
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)14.38.48.27.247.5
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)14.611.26.98.326.6
Exchange Rate (vs USD)27,13830,16232,42237,74342,000
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)26,01629,12330,99433,38440,895
Current Account (% of GDP)3.10.33.93.4-  
Current Account Balance (USD bn)13.61.216.415.8-  
Trade Balance (USD billion)18.15.420.822.6-  
Exports (USD billion)89.063.084.098.1-  
Imports (USD billion)70.957.663.175.5-  
Exports (annual variation in %)-4.2-29.233.316.9-  
Imports (annual variation in %)11.5-18.79.519.7-  
International Reserves (USD)126116104106101

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