Iran eases currency rules, hoping to buoy rial ahead of sanctions

Iranian authorities have barely mentioned days of protests in the cities of Isfahan Shiraz Mashhad and Tehran driven by concerns over the economy as well as wider anger at the political system

Iranian authorities have barely mentioned days of protests in the cities of Isfahan Shiraz Mashhad and Tehran driven by concerns over the economy as well as wider anger at the political system

Sanctions will be reimposed on Iran's ability to purchase U.S. dollars as well as its trade in gold and other key metals.

"The US reimposes sanctions on Iran and pulls out of the (2015) nuclear deal, and then wants to hold talks with us", Rouhani said.

The United States will reimpose a broad set of sanctions on the Iranian regime on August 7, executing a plan set in motion by President Donald Trump when he withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal three months ago, according to senior US administration officials.

A first phase of USA sanctions against Iran goes into effect overnight, targeting Iran's access to United States banknotes and key industries including cars and carpets.

It was not immediately clear whether the plan would create enough hard currency inflows to ease the demand for dollars and help end a panic-buying of hard currencies by many Iranians.

Another senior administration official said the administration is "not looking to grant waivers" to companies or governments who want to continue to receive Iranian oil imports, but is "glad to discuss and look at requests on a case-by-case basis". "And this is against the nation of Iran and the national interests of Iran".

Michael Eisenstadt, an expert on Middle Easter security and defense told reporters on the Washington Institute's call that while Iran had talked a big game, it carefully measured its actions to avoid a strong USA response.

Live:Iran's President addresses nation on economy, nuclear deal and US sanctions. "But talks need honesty", Rouhani said.

United States sanctions aim to limit, if not totally eliminate, Iran's access to foreign markets.

"Perhaps that will be the path the Iranians choose to go down", he said.

FILE PHOTO: A man walks past an anti-U.S. mural in Tehran, Iran October 13, 2017.

Trump added: 'As we continue applying maximum economic pressure on the Iranian regime, I remain open to reaching a more comprehensive deal that addresses the full range of the regime's malign activities'.

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They pledged to work on preserving financial flows and Iran's oil and gas exports - a lifeline of its economy.

German exports to Iran alone fell by four percent in the first five months of 2018 after rising by 16 percent past year, the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) said.

The decision goes into effect on Tuesday.

Hemmati said the central bank would allow a "managed float" of the rial's exchange rate and try to avoid using up its reserves to support the currency.

We deeply regret the re-imposition of sanctions by the United States, due to the latter's withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

He maintained the central bank's decision reflects Iran's "strength" in the face of renewed US sanctions.

Pompeo said it would require "enormous change" by Iran to get out from under renewed USA sanctions.

Rouhani: What Trump is doing is against Iran and the Iranian people. Among the top importers of Iranian oil are China, India, Turkey and South Korea. The strait at the mouth of the Persian Gulf is crucial to global energy supplies as about a third of all oil traded at sea passes through it.

However, Rouhani offered faint praise for Trump in his appearance on state TV.

"We are intent on cutting off the regime's access to resources that they have systematically used to finance terror, fund weapons proliferation, and threaten peace and stability in the region", the official said.

It will be an additional 90 days before the rest of the sanctions "snap back" into place in early November.

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