MEK Iran: Mullah Regime Stuck in Economic Death Spiral
Four decades of government, corruption and incompetence, state-sponsored terrorism, and global acts of aggression toward the international community have left the Iranian economy in shambles.
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), and the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran) reported that mullah regime entities are now finally reckoning with the irreparable damage that has been dealt with the country and struggling to find a way to stave off another anti-regime uprising fueled by economic unrest.
In 2019, a report conducted by the Statista International Statistics Institute ranked Iranian made products 50th out of 52 countries, according to the Alef website. The results from the reports were obtained from field research which examined and compared the economic indices of 52 countries in the Middle East.
The regime’s Ministry of Industry, Mine and Trade acknowledged Iran’s diminished position in the global economy in a report on industrial production from its Center for Business Studies and Research. Industrial production makes up the bulk of the country’s non-oil exports and has been crucial to the economy since oil sanctions were reinstated in 2018.
On December 28, 2020, the Jahan-e-Sanat daily wrote about the results of the regime’s report: “A study of the global position of Iran’s economy in 2019 shows that Iran is not in a good position in some international indicators related to production, especially global competitiveness, business ease index and global innovation index.”
The report also verified negative growth in the industrial industry since 2018.
Abandoning the FATF Lifeboat
Compounding the regime’s financial state is its refusal to accept the terms of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog. Acceptance of FATF standards and monitoring would allow the Iranian regime to export goods to member nations, but it would require Iran to cease its terrorist activities and financial support of terrorist proxies in the Middle East.
The regime’s stubborn refusal to take any action to save its economy led the Iranian Chamber of Commerce to describe the government as “‘exceptional’ in its insistence in going beyond FATF standards with full knowledge that the move would have dire consequences.
Two Paths Forward
The Iranian regime is on an unstable footing and faces economic collapse, international ridicule, and another uprising that could topple the regime and fulfill the MEK’s goal of a free and democratic Iran. This has left the regime with limited options going forward.
“There are two scenarios in this story that seem to have reached the last days. Iran should abandon normal foreign trade. In this case, the risk of phasing out of tangible and observed global trade must be accepted over time,” wrote Eghtesad News website on December 31, 2020.
The mullahs have spurned all options that would require them to give up their nuclear program or terrorist programs, so this would seem to be the most likely scenario. After years of negotiation, Iran is no closer to accepting the terms of the FATF than it was initially. Coupled with the U.S. oil sanctions, this has pushed the Iranian economy further into isolation from the rest of the world.
“Overhead costs are complex ways to bypass end foreign trade capability. Another scenario is for the country’s governing institutions to accept the truth of the world and to organize their foreign trade in such a way that they can sustain the economy,” Eghtesad News continued.
The second path forward would require the regime to relinquish its nuclear ambitions and terrorist activities. The MEK has stated repeatedly that the Iranian regime is incapable of reform, even in the face of its own demise, so it would be unfathomable for the mullahs to take the sensible path, but somehow one still exists.
“Recently, a very important economic agreement was reached between 15 countries of Asia and the Pacific, including ten countries of Southeast Asia (ASEAN) and 5 countries of China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand in the form of the world’s largest free trade agreement called the Comprehensive Regional Economic Partnership. Which, unfortunately, was not given much attention in Iran,” wrote Eghtesad-e-Mardom daily on December 28, 2020.
“The cost of exchanging the economy, especially the production sector, has increased significantly due to sanctions, and the country’s competitiveness in the region has decreased. The result of these issues has been a near halt in Iran’s economic growth over the past decade, a decline in real household incomes, and a decline in investment in the country,” Eghtesad-e-Mardom added.
Regime Change only Paths Forward
The mullahs regime’s failure to deal with the fall-out from imposed sanctions, the obvious corruption permeating through the government to the highest levels, the use of violent repression rather than considered persuasion, and the diabolic shambles of the pandemic response have all made Iran close to revolt.
The failure to solve the socio-economic problems in Iran is only likely to lead to a new uprising. It’s not a question of if, but when. The next uprising across Iran may just be large enough to remove the mullahs and the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei from their tenuous grip on power.
Tags: Iran Economy, Iran Opposition, Iran Protests, Iran Terrorism, Iran Uprising, MEK, Mujahedin-e Khalq, National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), People's Mojahedin organization of Iran, PMOI, Regime Change