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EghtesadOnline: The parliament has approved a bill allowing the government to take out $1.5 billion from the National Development Fund of Iran for creating jobs in rural and nomadic areas in the current fiscal year (March 2017-18), legislator Gholamreza Kateb was quoted as saying by IRNA on Monday.

The money from the sovereign wealth fund will be given out as loans for job creation and rural development. No further details of the plan have been announced. 

NDFI, Iran’s sovereign wealth fund, has $91 billion in reserves. The fund finances development projects using oil revenue deposits. 

As per the budget bill for the current Iranian year, the government is tasked with depositing 30% of revenues earned from oil and gas exports in NDFI, up from 20% as per the budget law of the 2016-17 fiscal year, Financial Tribune reported. 

MPs have allowed the government to withdraw a total of $2.3 billion from NDFI this year.

The approved withdrawals are far from what the government needs to cover the deficit that has forced it to drastically cut spending in both state bodies and infrastructure projects that have suffered from underinvestment and underdevelopment in the past few years.

NDFI Iran parliament Gholamreza Kateb National Development Fund of Iran Iran Rural Development