Saudi Crude Plot Failed to Cause Harm

Saudi Crude Plot Failed to Cause HarmSaudi Crude Plot Failed to Cause Harm

The Saudi plot to reduce oil prices from $110 per barrel to $23 failed to cripple Iran's economy, the Majlis speaker said on Monday.

"Iran has already reduced its reliance on oil revenues, which explains why tumbling crude prices cannot overshadow its economic climate despite the Saudis' desperate efforts," Ali Larijani was quoted as saying by Shana.

Referring to the major challenges posed to the country due to sanctions, Larijani said were it not for the step by step guidance of the Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, the right path to overcome all those economic challenges would have never been taken.  

"Although Saudis did their best to control the oil market by lowering oil prices and putting other nations into financial troubles, they themselves were seriously afflicted by the unreasonably low prices," he said.

"Nonetheless, they don't seem to have learnt a lesson yet, as they are still pursuing their wrong policies in the region by refusing to hold negotiations to help reverse the downward oil price trend."

Larijani noted that Iran's non-oil export has amounted to $50 billion, which is good but not enough.

"Plans have to be made to reduce reliance on oil revenues in the long run and not to be affected by plummeting oil prices like many other states on the verge of a financial disaster," he said.

Underscoring the fact that export-oriented production must be based on 'Resistance Economy' policies presented by the Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei to counter sanctions, the speaker said domestic production should form the basis of development.

"Different industries can definitely play a key role in fulfilling the ambition of reducing dependency on oil revenues," he said.

"In spite of the fact that sanctions, coupled with Saudis' unfair measures, slowed down Iran's economic growth, they never managed to make the country desperately short of commodities."

Larijani believes that manufacturing industries should be provided with whatever facilities they need, as they have been deprived of decent services for a long time.

"Selling oil cannot make production wheels turn, hence practical steps are required to help production get off the ground," he said.

Iranian statesmen, including President Hassan Rouhani, have called for economic reforms and reduction of reliance on oil revenues in the post-sanctions era.

Submitting the draft budget for the upcoming Iranian fiscal year (starting March 20) and Iran’s sixth five-year development plan (2016-21) to the parliament on January 18, Rouhani told lawmakers that low oil prices were the best reason to cut "the umbilical cord" to oil.

Reliance on crude oil has been trimmed and oil revenues will make up less than 25% of the proposed budget, down from 33% in the preceding budget.