Reform election

Businesses Confident Over Iran Vote

(150506) -- TEHRAN, May 6, 2015 () -- A man visits the 20th Oil, Gas, Refining and Petrochemical Exhibition in Tehran, Iran, on May 6, 2015. Iran opened its international oil exhibition in Tehran on Wednesday to attract investment in its energy sector. (/Ahmad Halabisaz) [ Rechtehinweis: Keine Verwendung in China, Taiwan, Macao und Hongkong, No usage in China, Taiwan, Macao and Hongkong ]
A visitor at the 20th Oil, Gas, Refining and Petrochemical Exhibition in Tehran in 2015.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    The parliamentary elections will provide strong indicators of Iran’s future economic and political direction. A hardline resurgence would dampen Western business optimism.

  • Facts


    • Iran has an 80 million-strong market with a per capita income of about $17,000 (€15,400), making it similar to Turkey.
    • Experts say German exports to Iran could reach the €4 billion mark in the next two years.
    • German companies are popular in Iran, with senior representatives from Daimler, Volkswagen and Siemens visiting this month.
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Hardliners and reformers are competing for Iran’s electorate Friday when Iranians vote for a new parliament. They will also vote for new members of the Assembly of Experts, the clerical body that appoints the country’s all-powerful theologian, the Supreme Leader.

President Hassan Rouhani ushered in a new era in 2013 when fairly moderate ministers gained key cabinet positions even while conservatives dominated parliament. However, he faces a difficult election. So far the signs of the economic upswing, promised after the signing of a deal in July that ended Western sanctions in exchange for Iran ending its nuclear program, have been few and far between.

Iran’s return to the world market promises German companies golden business opportunities. Managers and investors are delighted and Payam Afzali, a Tehran-based investment banker is already celebrating, as there is a “huge need for investment” with great potential in consumer sectors.

While ten years of isolation and sanctions were tough, Iranians are not without economic clout. This vast, 80 million-strong market has a per capita income of around $17,000 (€15,440), making Iran like Turkey. While the reformers do not expect to win the elections outright, a large voter turnout will prove whether their policies are popular.

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