President Mohammad Khatami presented to the Iranian parliament (Majlis) the country’s new 663-trillion rial ($67 billion) budget for the 1381 Iranian fiscal year, which starts in mid-March, 2002. The bill shows a 45.6 percent nominal increase over last year’s budget. "This bill has been devised according to a new budget planning approach, based on a unified currency rate," Khatami was quoted by the official news agency IRNA as saying Sunday, December 23.
The Iranian economy is emerging from stagnation, he stated, noting however that “major challenges” still hamper a smooth economic rehabilitation, namely foreign sanctions and dependence on the volatile petrodollars, which constitute 80 percent of the country's foreign exchange earnings.
With a population nearing 70 million, Iran’s inflation rate in 2002 is projected at around 12-14 percent and the economic growth rate is forecasted to reach 5.5-six percent. State spending is expected to grow by 14 percent over the year.
According to official figures, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) registered a 5.9 percent rise over the past Iranian year, while investments grew 8.4 percent. This growth rate stood at 9.6 in the industrial sector and five percent in the services sectors. State debts have declined to seven billion dollars and non-oil exports have recorded a 32 percent rise in the six months following the start of the 1380 Iranian year in March 2001. — (menareport.com)
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )