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Iran Nuclear Deal Did Little to Boost Economy, Survey Says

700 Iranians were surveyed by phone nationwide, and 70 percent of those questioned said that multinational companies have been slow to commit to trading with, or investing in, Iran. Concern about U.S. pressure was the reason that most respondents cited.

Goods manufactured by multinationals have become more accessible, said 43 percent of respondents. However, nearly 57 percent said more jobs for locals have not been created by the firms. Additionally, according to the report, which was provided to Bloomberg ahead of its release, some 43 percent perceived their level of investment as unchanged.

President Hassan Rouhani, who began his second term as Iran’s president last month, may struggle to deliver on his campaign promises, according to the survey’s findings. Rouhani’s second term was won with a pledge to build on the benefits of the nuclear deal, which came into effect last year. He vowed that more foreign investment would be enjoyed by Iran, which would help boost employment.

The poll suggests that Iranians aren’t seeing any change. Meanwhile, the fate of the nuclear deal is now in question, as the U.S. applies additional sanctions and lobbies European signatories to add restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program.

Still, 62 percent of respondents said that they still approve of the nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action or JPCOA.

Iran has made major deals in both energy and transportation, but many companies and major banks have been hesitant to look into business opportunities. Their uncertainty comes from U.S. President Trump, and the risk of further sanctions.

On September 20th, foreign ministers of the nations that signed the deal, including the U.S., Iran, the U.K. and France will meet on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. American and Iranian officials have said that at this meeting the deal’s flaws, as seen by the U.S., will be discussed, and Iran will have the chance to talk about what it considers U.S. violations of the agreement.

Details of the survey, conducted in cities across Iran’s 31 provinces last August, will be presented at next month’s Europe-Iran Forum, where businesses working in, or with an interest in Iran will come together.