Tehran Times– Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Minister Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi has said that new Iranian e-commerce symbolizes the country’s resilience in the face of sanctions imposed by the Trump administration.
“Today we have startups focusing on e-payment and online taxis like Uber, which are making significant progress in the field,” Jahromi said in an interview with NBC News on Thursday. “The sanctions made the Iranian people more self-reliant, to be able to develop things on their own that they might not otherwise be able to get,” he said.
Jahromi and other officials also say digital technology is crucial to the country’s economic future, especially as sanctions imposed by the U.S. have slashed revenues from oil exports.
In May, the Iranian Strategic Technologies Center announced that over 6,500 startups are now active in Iran. The Iranian startup ecosystem is one of the biggest ones in southwestern Asia and will turn into the most powerful economies in the near future.
Restriction on social media is counterproductive
As an avid Twitter user, Azari Jahromi told NBC News that restrictions on social media were counterproductive, undermining Iran’s political and economic interests.
“My very good use of Twitter indicates that I don’t believe in its use being limited or prohibited,” he said.
“We have to admit the fact that we have weakness in this field [social media],” Jahromi concluded.