The nuclear deal promised to unblock the full economic and commercial potential of Iran but So far, this potential has not yet been achieved. Italian exports to Iran grow but below expectations and without sector diversification.
The nuclear deal promised to unblock the full economic and commercial potential of Iran.
So far, this potential has not yet been achieved:
Considering the value of exports, Italy remains the second EU partner of Iran. In 2016 Italian exports to the country registered a +28% over 2015, for a volume of €1.5 bln (against a prevision of €1.7 bln). In the EU, only Germany is doing better, with €2.6 bln in 2016 (+26% vs. 2015).
However, the growth of exports is not accompanied by adequate sector diversification.
Industrial machinery, with over €880 mln in exports in 2016, account for some 60% of Italian exports to Iran, followed by electrical appliances (7%), medical devices (4%), plastics (3%) and vehicles (3%).
2016 recorded +225% in imports from Iran (467 million € in 2015 compared to 1,051 million € in 2016) thanks to the lifting of international sanctions.
Newly elected President Trump displays a wavering attitude toward Iran. One example is the signing of new sanctions on 25 natural and legal persons in relation to missile tests conducted by Iran in early 2017. Military interventionism in Syria adds an element of complexity to a geopolitical panorama that is hard to read.
The upcoming Iranian elections see Rouhani in the lead. The biggest unknowns relate to a cooling of enthusiasm following the nuclear deal and the death of a precious political ally, Hashemi Rafsanjani.
On the Italian front, the Iran dossier has encountered problems also because of the Italian political situation. The risk is that Italy and its companies lose the advantage and positions gained in Iran compared to the international competition.