News ID: 266916
Published: 1213 GMT March 14, 2020

Nine-month economic growth stands at 1.2%: CBI

Nine-month economic growth stands at 1.2%: CBI

The governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) announced the country's 1.2 percent economic growth for the first nine months of the current Iranian year (March 21-December 21, 2019).

In an Instagram post, Abdolnaser Hemmati wrote, "According to the reports of the CBI, non-oil economic growth in the said months stood at 3.3 percent, while including oil, the growth rate reached 1.2 percent, in this period," reported Mehr News Agency on Saturday.

"Sectors of agriculture, industry-mining and services, with growth rates of 7.8 percent, 7 percent and 1.2 percent respectively, had the main role in the gained growth rate," he added.

The senior banking official hoped for production prosperity of Iran in near future and after beating coronavirus outburst.

The CBI in February officially launched its new scheme for helping small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and other manufacturers with an initial credit worth of $3.7 billion.

Hemmati said on February 4 that the new credit facility, dubbed the Productive Line of Credit, or GAM in Persian, would enable manufacturers to obtain documents from the banks that would guarantee payments owed to suppliers of raw materials and others on the supply chain.

Hemmati said an initial fund of 3.7 billion had been earmarked for the scheme through resources of four major Iranian banks, namely Bank Melli Iran, Bank Saderat Iran, Bank Tejarat, and Bank Mellat.

“These credits would gradually be given to active manufacturing units in the country,” said the chief banker, adding that SMEs were a main focus of the credit facility as the government seeks to help them survive the current economic situation of the country.

Officials have said that letters of credit issued under GAM can also be sold in the market with a discount, enabling the manufacturers to access the cash they need for their activities.

Experts say the new scheme would prevent any inflation that could be caused by government’s massive injection of liquidity in the market.

The launch of the credit facility comes despite tight finances at the CBI and amid government efforts to diversify the economy away from oil as Iran’s direct sale of crude, once a staple of government funds, remains under American sanctions.

Hemmati said GAM was a manifestation of CBI programs to help Iranian economy grow without relying on oil revenues.

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