The Iranian regime would need oil priced at $194.60 a barrel to balance its budget next year, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Monday.
Hurt by tighter U.S. sanctions, Iran’s regime – a key member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) – is expected to have a fiscal deficit of 4.5% this year and 5.1% next year, the fund said in a report.
On Friday, international benchmark Brent crude closed trading at just above $62 a barrel.
Iran’s regime saw its oil revenues surge after a 2015 nuclear pact agreed with six major powers ended a sanctions regime imposed three years earlier over its illicit nuclear weapons program.
But new sanctions brought in after the United States withdrew from that deal in 2018 are the most painful imposed by Washington on the regime.
The Iranian regime’s economy is expected to shrink by 9.5% this year, compared to a prior estimate of a 6% contraction, the IMF has said, but real gross domestic product (GDP) growth is expected to be flat next year.
“The estimate is that … sanctions that were reintroduced last year and tightened this year, next year will not have an additional impact,” Jihad Azour, director of the IMF’s Middle East and Central Asia Department, told Reuters.
A drop in the Iranian currency following the reimposition of sanctions has disrupted the Iranian regime’s foreign trade and boosted annual inflation, which the IMF forecasts at 35.7% this year and 31% next year.
Azour said the Iranian regime should align the official exchange rate with the market rate to control inflation.
The IMF forecast Iran’s exports of goods and services to drop to $60.3 billion this year from $103.2 billion last year and to fall further to $55.5 billion in 2020.
Iran’s Misery Index, which measures total unemployment and inflation, rose to 39% last winter, while the figure was 19.4% in the winter of 2016, the Statistical Center of Iran : Azarab Workers Continue Protest, Block National Railway Suppressive Forces Fire Teargas
— NCRI-FAC (@iran_policy) October 21, 2019
The deteriorating economic conditions have triggered protest rallies by teachers, workers, students, and retirees over the past months, with protesters denouncing regime leaders and government officials whom they accuse of oppression, mismanagement, and corruption.
The current trend is indicative of the Iranian regime’s worsening economy which is a direct result of wasting the wealth of a nation on warmongering and export of terrorism by funding proxies in the region and around the world and also corruption and theft by the ruling mullahs. The only solution is regime change which, as Iranian opposition leader Mrs. Maryam Rajavi has time and again declared, is within reach.