• Monday, May 25, 2020
  • Last Update : 09:41 pm

Iran presses for IMF loan: Some business to stay shut despite easing

  • Published at 04:38 pm April 8th, 2020
President Hassan Rouhani
Iran President Hassan Rouhani AFP

'I urge international organizations to fulfil their duties ... We are a member of the IMF'

President Hassan Rouhani pressed harder on Wednesday for a $5 billion emergency IMF loan Iran has sought to fight the Middle East's worst coronavirus outbreak, saying the Fund would be guilty of discrimination if it withholds the money.

Rouhani also said some businesses will remain closed until further notice, after the authorities announced last week that they will begin to ease a shut-down order from April 11.

Iran's central bank wrote last month to the International Monetary Fund to request the $5 billion from its Rapid Financing Initiative, an emergency program that aids countries faced with sudden shocks such as natural disasters. It was Tehran's first request for IMF aid since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution.

"I urge international organizations to fulfil their duties ... We are a member of the IMF," Rouhani said at a televised cabinet meeting. "There should be no discrimination in giving loans," Rouhani added, saying such discrimination would be unacceptable.

In a tweet on Sunday, the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani, accused the United States of blocking Tehran's loan request from the IMF.

Iran has banned intercity travel and shut non-essential businesses to fight an outbreak that according to official figures has killed 3,872 people and infected 62,589.

The authorities have said some businesses whose operations do not create a big risk of spreading the virus will be allowed to reopen from Saturday. They have not given a detailed explanation of which businesses fall into that category.

"But high-risk businesses will remain closed until further notice," Rouhani said. "We should continue fighting the disease while our economic activities continue as much as possible."

An IMF official has said the Fund is in dialogue with Iran, with talks aimed at understanding Iran's needs and what is required for the loan request to be processed.

The coronavirus outbreak has further damaged Iran's economy, already battered by US sanctions, reimposed since 2018 when Washington exited an agreement to lift them in return for curbs to Iran's nuclear program.

Tehran has blamed the United States and its “maximum pressure” policy for restricting Iran’s ability to respond effectively to the virus.

"The US sanctions on Iran are economic and medical terrorism ... They are in violation of international medical conventions," Rouhani said.

US officials have said that the sanctions do not target medicine for Iran and Washington had offered to help Tehran face the outbreak. Iran has dismissed the offer as ridiculous.

50
50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail