The British government is actively supporting renewed trade with Iran and the Department of International Trade (DIT) is working to encourage trade opportunities between British and Iranian businesses. This active encouragement and endorsement of renewed trade ties with Iran provides great reassurance and a boost of confidence for UK businesses seeking to engage in the Iranian market.
The British government have issued advice in regards to trading with Iran and details of its’ guidelines can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/doing-business-with-iran/frequently-asked-questions-on-doing-business-with-iran
Across Iran, investors may find it increasingly difficult to discover and engage with qualified counterparts. Showcase Iran 2016 has been specifically designed to give investors a simple way to access growth companies, in one place and at one time, thereby accelerating investment discovery.
With the lifting of many sanctions for UK and European individuals and companies, Iran has begun to take measures to encourage foreign investment in its potentially lucrative economy. Iran’s Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Act (FIPPA) guarantees foreign capital against nationalisation, protects foreign investors against discrimination and suggests the possibility of non-Iranians owning 100% of shares in Iranian companies.
The potential for Iran to become one of the leading regional economies is vast, and the success of moderates and reformists in the February 2016 elections is expected to result in greater economic reform. Iran’s five-year plan of 2016-2020 priorities the development and expansion of oil, gas, transportation, construction, information technology, petrochemicals and agriculture. Key industries that will be represented by the attending companies include financial services, telecommunications, distribution, and construction materials, amongst others.
In June 2016 the U.S. Treasury confirmed that U.S. financial institutions are permitted to maintain business relations with those non-U.S. financial institutions which conduct business with non-sanctioned Iranian entities. This is provided that any U.S. citizens in these institutions are excluded from all Iran-related business.
This reiteration should put many UK and European institutions at greater ease regarding Iranian investment and trade. Showcase Iran 2016 will attract some of the leading investors and private equity firms looking to extend into Iran and take advantage of the post-sanctions opportunities.