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Iran has finally issued a clear statement about the size of the frozen overseas assets that are set to be released over the coming weeks, following the implementation of the nuclear deal and the lifting of sanctions with effect from 16 January.
Iran’s head of the Management and Planning Organization and government spokesman Mohammad Nobakht announced on 31 January that Iran now has access to about $100bn of unfrozen assets, following earlier confusion about how large these assets held with foreign banks were. This $100bn figure is towards the top end of prior estimates.
In order to limit inflation Tehran looks set to only gradually access and release the funds, though it may come under growing public pressure to release a windfall. Following the lifting of sanctions on 16 January, Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Governor Valiollah Seif put frozen assets at $32.6bn: $28.1bn owed to the central bank and $4.5bn to the government (MEES, 22 January).
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