“It gives a solid balance sheet having extra capital kept with the Central Bank that is 2.5 times more than our paid-up capital,” he said.
Beheshti Rouy and other Iranians attending the Europe-Iran forum stressed the role that their country’s private sector can play in the post-sanctions environment. (This reporter was invited to attend the forum to moderate a panel with European ambassadors to Iran, and the event organizers paid her travel expenses.)
“We believe the private sector will have a chance to upgrade their position in the Iranian economy,” Beheshti Rouy said. “During the last two years, there has been a policy of wait and see. The lifting of sanctions will bring opportunities for people who are striving to have a decent life. ”
Beheshti Rouy, who was educated at Portland State University in Oregon in the 1970s, said he returned to Iran in 1980. His eyes filled with tears when he talked about the reasons for his return and his decision to stay in Iran through years of war, sanctions and other hardships.
“As a banker, I am hopeful,” he said, for a more prosperous future for Iranians. “If I lose my hope, I cannot stay behind my desk one more day.”