Iran’s Zarif: Oil price plot to backfire

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif underlined that those who have hatched or played a role in the plot to decrease crude prices will be harmed themselves, adding that Tehran will not allow anyone to damage its national interests.

“We believe that certain countries’ support for extremism and their oil policies will more than others harm them themselves,” Zarif said on Tuesday night after returning from his daylong trip to Afghanistan where he held meetings with high-ranking Afghan officials on bilateral ties and regional situation.

“The Islamic Republic is determined to have relations with the neighbors based on common policies and mutual respect but it doesn’t allow any country at all to impair our national interests and rights,” he told reporters.

“The Islamic Republic is a big country and is able to resist these pressures without sustaining any considerable impacts on its policies and we will live through these problems with no major concern,” Zarif said.

In relevant remarks earlier this month, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani downplayed the effects of falling oil prices on the country’s economy, and said the masterminds of the plot be harmed more than Iran.

“You should know that those who have plotted the fall in oil prices against certain countries will regret their deeds. This path cannot be continued and you should know that if Iran is harmed by the falling oil prices, other producing countries, including Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, will sustain more losses than Iran,” Rouhani said, addressing a gathering of people in the Southern city of Bushehr.

He noted that 80% of Saudi Arabia and 95% of Kuwait’s annual budgets depended on crude sales, adding that only 33% of Iran’s this year budget relied on oil revenues.

Stressing that the government had foreseen ways to cope with falling oil prices, Rouhani said, “We will increase non-oil exports this year.”

Also in December, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said exports of crude was just one of Iran’s sources of revenue and the country could live up without oil sales and through exports of its rich mineral resources, modern industries, and talented people.

“We have different methods and scenarios to run the country under different circumstances and we will not forget which countries are conspiring to reduce oil prices,” Larijani said during a visit to Syria.

He said that the same countries conspired against Iran in the 1980s when Iran was at war with Iraq.

“It would be a mistake if they (certain governments) imagine that they can change the strategic situation of the (Middle East) region through oil (price),” said Larijani.

In early March, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei in a meeting with economic activists, elites and state officials in Tehran explained the root cause of Iran’s turn to the Resistance Economy as well as the specifications, features and components of such an economic model.

Ayatollah Khamenei elaborated on the reasons and incentives for the adoption of the economy of resistance, and said, “Abundant material and non-material capacities of the country, treatment of chronic and lasting economic problems, confrontation against sanctions and immunizing the country’s economy against global economic crises” are the reasons why such a model should be practiced in Iran.

He further noted that the components of the resistance economy are “creating movement and dynamicity in the country’s economy and improving macroeconomic indicators”, “ability to resist against threatening factors”, “reliance on internal capacities”, adoption of a “Jihadi approach”, “people-centeredness”, “reforming consumption patterns”, “campaign against corruption” and adoption of “knowledge-based approach”.

Ayatollah Khamenei referred to the sanctions imposed by the western powers against Iran due to its peaceful nuclear program, and said the country should strengthen its economy in a way that no boycott and embargo could ever leave a negative impact on it so easily.

By Fars News Agency


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