Economy, Domestic Economy

Bureaucracy Impeding Expat Investments

Bureaucracy Impeding Expat Investments
Bureaucracy Impeding Expat Investments

Bureaucratic procedures are a major deterrent to Iranian expatriates willing to invest in Iran, said Chairman of High Council on Iranian Expatriates Affairs Javad Ghavam-Shahidi on Sunday, adding: “We are making every effort to remove these obstacles.”

Noting that there are no “legal obstacles” in the way of expatriates’ investing in Iran, he said it is the “bureaucratic procedures that delay the execution of these laws,” he was quoted by ILNA as saying.

The number of Iranians residing abroad is estimated at 5 to 6 million, which accounts for almost seven percent of Iran’s total population.

In December last year, Ghavam-Shahidi had put the economic turnover of Iranians living abroad at around $1.5 to $4 trillion – a huge sum which if moved into the country, could help solve many economic problems the government is currently grappling with.

According to Ghavam-Shahidi, “the expatriates generally have a positive image of President Hassan Rouhani’s administration.”  

Given the great potential for the transfer of knowledge and wealth from Iranian expatriates, the administration has been trying to reach a better understanding of the status of Iranians residing abroad and their financial and scientific capabilities.

A report by the International Monetary Fund in 2009 indicated that Iran tops the list of countries facing brain drain with 150,000 to 180,000 academic elites leaving the country each year. Iran’s brain drain is estimated to cost the country over $50 billion each year in economic losses.

Iranian expatriates mostly live in North America, Europe, Persian Gulf states, Turkey, and Australia.