Iran Economy

Is Iran a rich country?

Iran's economy is marked by statist policies, inefficiencies, and reliance on oil and gas exports, but Iran also possesses significant agricultural, industrial, and service sectors. The Iranian government directly owns and operates hundreds of state-owned enterprises and indirectly controls many companies affiliated with the country's security forces. Distortions - including corruption, price controls, subsidies, and a banking system holding billions of dollars of non-performing loans - weigh down the economy, undermining the potential for private-sector-led growth.

Private sector activity includes small-scale workshops, farming, some manufacturing, and services, in addition to medium-scale construction, cement production, mining, and metalworking. Significant informal market activity flourishes and corruption is widespread.

The lifting of most nuclear-related sanctions under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in January 2016 sparked a restoration of Iran’s oil production and revenue that drove rapid GDP growth, but economic growth declined in 2017 as oil production plateaued. The economy continues to suffer from low levels of investment and declines in productivity since before the JCPOA, and from high levels of unemployment, especially among women and college-educated Iranian youth.

In May 2017, the re-election of President Hasan RUHANI generated widespread public expectations that the economic benefits of the JCPOA would expand and reach all levels of society. RUHANI will need to implement structural reforms that strengthen the banking sector and improve Iran’s business climate to attract foreign investment and encourage the growth of the private sector. Sanctions that are not related to Iran’s nuclear program remain in effect, and these—plus fears over the possible re-imposition of nuclear-related sanctions—will continue to deter foreign investors from engaging with Iran.

Iran Economy Data

What is the GDP of Iran?

GDP - Gross Domestic Product (PPP) $1,357,000,000,000 (USD)
GDP - official exchange rate $396,900,000,000 (USD)
GDP - real growth rate 0.8%
GDP Per Capita $17,800.00 (USD)
GDP by Sector- agriculture 9.3%
GDP by Sector- Industry 38.4%
GDP by Sector- services 52.3%
GDP - composition, by end use household consumption: 53.1%

government consumption: 10.9%

investment in fixed capital: 27.4%

investment in inventories: 6.6%

exports of goods and services: 22.8%

imports of goods and services: -20.8%
Population Below Poverty Line 18%
Inflation Rate 11.8%
Labor Force 25,700,000
Labor Force By Occupation- agriculture 16.9%
Labor Force By Occupation- industry 34.4%
Labor Force By Occupation- services 48.7%
Unemployment Rate 14.6%
Unemployment - note data are according to the Iranian Government
Fiscal Year 21 March - 20 March
Annual Budget $105,700,000,000 (USD)
Budget Surplus or Deficit - percent of GDP -4.5%
Public Debt (% of GDP) 27.5%
Taxes and other revenues - percent of GDP 11.6%
Major Industries petroleum, petrochemicals, textiles, cement and other construction materials, food processing (particularly sugar refining and vegetable oil production), metal fabricating, armaments
Industrial Growth Rate 4.3%
Agriculture Products wheat, rice, other grains, sugar beets, fruits, nuts, cotton; dairy products, wool; caviar
Currency Code Iranian rial (IRR)
Commercial Bank Prime Lending Rate 12%

Labor Force by Occupation- As reported by Iran

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