Iran has made its intentions to prepare for an economic standoff with the United States known in statements released by the vice president and high-ranking members of parliament this week. Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri told local media that, “Today, we are in special conditions and we are confronting the U.S.” He went on to state that the nation required cautious preparation to counter the United States’ sanctions. He noted that it would be foolish to believe that Iran’s economy would not suffer under the sanctions. He added that, “We will sell as much oil as we can,” despite the U.S.’s move to block the country’s oil exportation.

Iranian Supreme Leader Khamenei has decreed that the nation will set up an “economic war room” for handling all of Iran’s future employment, investments, and inflation issues while focusing on improving the nation’s banking. In the magazine Hezbollah Path, parliamentary economic committee leader Mohammad Reza Pourebrahimi wrote, “On April 28 in a secret meeting with the heads of executive, judiciary and legislative body, Iran’s Supreme Leader has emphasized on the establishment of an economic war room.” The letter written by Pourebrahimi was published on Saturday. The “war room” will include members of the judiciary, executive, and legislative bodies; it will be headed by President Hassan Rouhani himself.

This is not the first time Iran established such a collective, an “economic war room” was established in the 1980s when the Iran-Iraq war kicked off. Pourebrahimi added that, “Investment, inflation, employment, and improving banking are among the main tasks of the economic war room … So far the room has decided to ban a list of 1,339 importing items.” The Iranian Minister of Industry, Mohammad Shariatmadari, had declared that the country had prepared a catalog of 1,339 items it would no longer import in late June. This would be done to protect small businesses and producers of domestic products while simultaneously controlling the national outflow of money, according to Shariatmadari.

United States State Department senior adviser Brain Hook has said that, “More than 50 firms have announced their intention to leave the Iranian market particularly in energy and financial sectors.” No doubt that President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear deal has caused a stir in the Islamic Republics economy. The Iranian currency has dropped in value by nearly fifty percent since the announcement in May. This has also caused many Iranian nationals to begin stocking up on U.S. dollars and gold to stabilize their wealth. The State and Treasury Departments have started a joint committee of senior advisers to apply as much diplomatic and economic pressure as possible during the sanctions.

Featured image: Supreme Leader of Iran Ali Khamenei. |