0657 GMT January 18, 2020
Speaking to Tasnim News Agency, Asadollah Abbasi pointed to the economic sanctions against Iran’s oil sector and said the administration and Parliament should prioritize reducing the country’s dependence on oil revenues, especially in the current situation.
“We expect the administration to conclude the bill that would change the budget’s structure and submit it to Parliament by next month,” he said.
After the Parliament passes the bill, the budget for the coming years will be outlined on the basis of the items in the bill, the lawmaker added.
He further emphasized that given the current conditions of the country and the existing economic issues, the budgetary process should be changed so that the country would be less dependent on oil revenues.
The remarks come against the backdrop of increased tensions between Iran and the US with Washington imposing new sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
The US has ratcheted up pressure on Iran since last year after withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
Since then, the administration of US President Donald Trump has been trying to reduce Iran’s oil exports to “zero,” and has sent an aircraft carrier strike group, a bomber squad, an amphibious assault ship, and a Patriot missile battery to the Middle East to try to stack up pressure on Tehran.
Iranian officials, however, have dismissed such moves as psychological warfare, saying the country has its own ways of circumventing the American bans and selling crude oil.