Economy, Business And Markets

Lifting of Sanctions to Benefit UAE

Lifting of Sanctions to Benefit UAELifting of Sanctions to Benefit UAE

The United Arab Emirates will grow faster if Iran reaches a breakthrough in talks with the West as the Arab state has always acted as a gateway for Iranian business, according to a Dubai-based Iranian expert.

Hossein Asrar Haghighi, vice-executive president of Iranian Business Council in Dubai, said earlier this week if the nuclear talks yield positive results it would give a boost to trade ties between the UAE and Iran.

“We might see a huge trade growth between the two countries. Trade figures would double and business relations would be strengthened. There would be an increase in the number of tourists visiting the UAE,” he said, as quoted by

“We have to see how sanctions would be eased, whether it would be done in a gradual way or it would be taken up speedily. The outcome would benefit immensely,” he added.

President Hassan Rouhani also indicated on Sunday that the country’s isolation from the world economy could soon come to end.

The tiny Persian Gulf nation is already one of Iran’s major trade partners, and before the intensification of banking sanctions in 2012, was the major financial services provider to Iranian businesses.

Iran’s improving relations with the West and the possible removal of sanctions, which have long cut Iran from international business, will create a flood of trade and demand for banking services in the UAE.

The UAE is well placed as the financial hub of the Middle East to reap the rewards from removal of sanctions against Iran.

Tehran is holding negotiations with the P5+1 (the US, Britain, China, France, Russia and Germany) to end the sanctions which have intensified in recent years. The countries are likely to reach a comprehensive agreement in the next six months.

Trade figures between the two countries stood at $8.5 billion in 2013. The figure fell to $5 billion in 2014 due to sanctions. Bank accounts of a number of Iranian businessmen were closed.

“Some traders stopped doing business and migrated to other countries due to closure of their accounts. If the talks go in a positive direction, bank accounts of these businessmen might become active again giving a big boost to trade relations,” Haghighi said.

He did not say how many people were affected due to closure of bank accounts. “We don’t know how many but we have seen a significant drop in our membership. Some of them went to Iran while others left to other foreign countries to do business. Banks were under great pressure from the US to close the accounts.”