TEHRAN — Iran has to cut imports to overcome the latest round of economic sanctions world powers slapped on the Islamic republic over its nuclear drive, the country’s central bank chief said on Sunday.
“Reducing the consumption of imported goods means confronting the sanctions. There is no other way,” Mahmoud Bahmani told a news conference.
“Sanctions are happening and we should not be scared or frightened. We should convert the sanctions into opportunities.”
The UN Security Council hit Iran with a fourth set of sanctions on June 9 over its nuclear programme. The United States and European Union have since imposed even tougher punitive measures of their own.
Bahmani insisted the way to thwart the effect of the sanctions — which target Iran’s banking, financial and energy sectors — was to cut down on imports.
“We need to decrease imports. We should not allow all goods to enter the country,” the central bank governor said, adding Iran must produce most of the goods itself and also raise taxes on inbound luxury items.