TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - Iran has successfully transferred some of its formerly frozen assets in order to ensure that financial sanctions have been fully lifted in accordance with a historic nuclear deal, the head of the central bank said Tuesday.
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran has successfully transferred some of its formerly frozen assets in order to ensure that financial sanctions have been fully lifted in accordance with a historic nuclear deal, the head of the central bank said Tuesday.
State TV quoted Valiollah Seif as saying Iran has transferred assets from banks in Japan and South Korea to other banks in Germany and the United Arab Emirates. He did not give the amount of the transfers.
Seif said the lifting of sanctions, which took place over the weekend after the U.N. verified Iran's compliance with the nuclear deal reached last summer, would give Tehran access to $32 billion in overseas assets and reduce the cost of international currency transactions for Iran by up to 15 percent.
He promised to unify the exchange rate within six months, eliminating a black market in which foreign currencies, including the U.S. dollar, are traded at 20 percent higher than their official value.
President Hassan Rouhani said Tuesday that now that sanctions have been lifted, Iran should redouble efforts to attract foreign investment and liberalize its economy.
"Government should withdraw from the economy in favor of the private sector, step by step," Rouhani said at a meeting with business leaders, in which he said Iran could be a "new emerging market."
Iran expects an economic breakthrough after the lifting of crippling sanctions linked to its nuclear program and a windfall of billions of dollars in unfrozen assets. Several foreign business delegations have visited in recent months, hoping to tap into the oil-rich country's huge market.
Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected in Tehran next week at the head of an 800-member delegation, and next month Rouhani plans to visit Italy and France, which were major economic partners in the pre-sanctions era.