Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday released a “budget of rsisitance” against cripling sanctions imposed by arch-enemy the United States.
“Next year, similar to the current year, our budget is a budget of resistance and perseverance against sanctions,” Rouhani told parliament in remarks broadcast on state radio.
“This budget announces to the world that despite sanctions we will manage the country, especially in terms of oil,” he added.
While delivering speech, President Rouhani announced a 15 percent increase for public sector wages in a country whose economy has been battered by US sanctions.
The budget for the financial year starting late March 2020 comes after fuel price hikes that were imposed in mid-November triggered deadly demonstrations across the Islamic republic.
On Wednesday, Rouhani said that Iran is still ready for nuclear talks on condition of the US first lifts “unlawful” sanctions.
The US also warned the “international scientific community that collaborating with Iran on space launch vehicles could contribute to its ballistic missile program.”
In response to the US, Iran said that its space program is aimed at building rockets to launch telecommunications satellites. Iran has fired two such satellites into orbit since 2013. But three other attempts this year have failed, including one rocket that blew up on the launch pad last week.
In the recent attack, in November the US accused Iran of “nuclear extortion” and vowed no let-up in pressure after the clerical regime and said it would resume uranium enrichment at the key Fordow plant.
Rouhani announced Iran’s latest step away from commitments to the nuclear agreement since the United States withdrew from it more than a year ago in an address carried live by Iranian state TV.
Tehran and Washington have been at loggerheads since May last year when US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the nuclear deal and began reimposing crippling sanctions.
Donald Trump began imposing punitive measures in May 2018, after unilaterally withdrawing from an accord that gave Iran relief from sanctions in return for limits on its nuclear programme.