EghtesadOnline: The Central Bank of Iran has established an exclusive online system to allocate foreign currencies at cheap government rates to innovative and knowledge-based firms in collaboration with the Presidential Office’s Department of Science and Technology.
“Foreign exchange rate hikes and recent currency troubles in the country have certainly created problems for startups and knowledge-based firms that require foreign currencies to purchase equipment or work with foreign partners,” Sorena Sattari, vice president for science and technology, told IBENA.
“This issue is evident in the modern ecosystem of major companies and that is why the Presidential Office’s Department of Science and Technology held negotiations with the central bank and created a direct system to alleviate currency problems for these companies that has had suitable achievements so far,” he elaborated on reasons behind the move.
The US dollar hit an all-time high of about 120,000 against Iran’s rial last week. The latter has since regained some lost ground on the back of hopes that the government is set to change its currency policy in the coming days. Each USD was traded for 102,000 rials on Saturday, according to Financial Tribune.
The significant devaluation of the rial, which lost about two-thirds of its value in the past six months, has put local firms under severe pressure by increasing the prices of raw materials.
Sattari, however, believes that tech-based and innovative firms will not be significantly impacted by international sanctions because their leaders have grown up under sanctions and are used to major troubles for local businesses.
“They no longer see sanctions as a huge problem,” he said, adding that officials need to take care of “local sanctions”, i.e. troubles created by local forces that see their personal interests in danger.
The first round of US sanctions against Iran is set to snap back after the country’s initial wind-down period for companies working with Iran ends on Aug. 6.