Sci & Tech

Ministry Devising ICT Guidelines for Foreign Firms

Ministry Devising ICT  Guidelines for Foreign Firms
Ministry Devising ICT  Guidelines for Foreign Firms

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is devising guidelines for foreign ICT firms interested in entering Iran's technology market.

Focused on boosting the share of local technological products in the domestic market, these guidelines will be finalized in the coming months, Mehr News Agency reported.

The guidelines stipulate that foreign firms will have to set up educational centers to transfer technical know-how. To this end, the companies must hire and train local workforce.

Also, companies operating in the areas of software and hardware can set up business inside Iran only if their activities "do not undermine the presence of local counterparts and induce a competitive business environment".

The guidelines will also outline conditions that need to be met by companies operating in areas such as ICT equipment manufacturing, software development and content delivery networks.   

Communications and Information Technology Minister Mahmoud Vaezi commented that future ICT plans for cooperation with foreign firms are in line with Resistance Economy—a set of guidelines advocated by the Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei to reduce the country’s reliance on oil exports by promoting domestic production.

The plan is to standardize trade competition in Iran to make foreign companies abide by state regulations. This will help consumers pick services as they become further localized.

"Future cooperation plans have been designed in a manner that will require foreign direct investment," he said.


  Connecting Iran's Provinces

Vaezi made the statements during a trip to the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan where the ministry will be expanding its Internet network to 1,361 villages.

The visit comes at a time when the government is increasing its funding and direction to the province that has suffered from a lack of investment.

The announcement of connectivity arrangement will build on current projects to connect the least developed provinces.

"Along with investment, technologies must also be imported so that the quality of local research improves," he said.

Vaezi accompanied President Hassan Rouhani during his trip to France and Italy a week after the July nuclear deal with world powers went into force, allowing the United States and the European Union to lift economic sanctions in exchange for Tehran placing time-bound curbs on its nuclear activities.

Iran seeks to restore its economic relations with Rome and Paris, which were among Tehran's main economic partners before the tightening of international sanctions in January 2012.

Following the easing of sanctions, foreign science and technology firms are expected to reenter the Iranian market.