Iran's landmark nuclear accord, one year on
The world on Thursday marked the passage of one year since the landmark nuclear accord between Iran and the P5+1 group of nations.

On July 14 of last year, Tehran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) signed the agreement in Vienna.

The deal called for an end to longstanding international sanctions on Iran in return for curbs on -- and inspections of -- the Islamic republic’s nuclear energy program.

Six months later, on Jan. 16 of this year, the U.S. and EU officially lifted their respective sanctions on Iran after the International Atomic Energy Agency declared that Tehran had complied with its obligations as laid out in the agreement.

On Wednesday, speaking on the eve of the agreement’s first anniversary, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani praised the deal, which, he said, had contributed to global peace, security and stability.

"The comprehensive nuclear deal benefits everyone," he said, according to Iran’s official IRNA news agency.

However, while asserting that Tehran had adhered to all the agreement’s terms, he warned that Iran would "quickly revert to its pre-deal nuclear capabilities if the West chooses to violate the agreement".

Rouhani went on to note that the lifting of sanctions on arms sales to Iran some six months ago had served to bolster the country’s overall defense capacity.

Since his election in 2013, Rouhani -- considered a political moderate -- has sought to end Tehran’s 13-year-old standoff with Western governments over Iran's controversial nuclear program.

Arshin Adib-Moghaddam, chairman of the Center for Iranian Studies at the London Middle East Institute, described last year’s nuclear deal as "a great success" for Rouhani -- one which illustrated Iran's desire to achieve its national interests by diplomatic means.

In the six months since the sanctions were lifted, he said "Iranian banks and companies have already regained their place in the international markets".

"I believe Iran’s economic successes will continue," he added. "Even if [U.S. presidential candidate] Donald Trump becomes America’s next president, he will likely maintain Washington’s relations with Tehran, albeit covertly."

Mohammad Ebrahim Taherian Fard, Iran’s ambassador to Turkey, agrees that last year’s nuclear deal has already had a positive impact on the Iranian economy -- especially in terms of foreign investment.

"Iran is now open to foreign investment in numerous fields, including tourism, industry, energy, roads and construction, transport, air fleet modernization and infrastructure," Fard told Anadolu Agency.

Bilgin Aygul, president of the government-run Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey (DEIK), for his part, described the Iranian market as "powerful and attractive".

"Iran is a market which most world countries have been watching closely," he told Anadolu Agency. "It has the ability to produce everything."

"When dealing with Iran," he added, "one has to be patient and think in terms of the long term".

The following is a brief chronology of events since the landmark agreement was signed one year ago:

July 14, 2015: Tehran and the P5+1 group of nations sign a final agreement in Vienna calling for an end to longstanding international sanctions on Iran in return for curbs on Iran’s nuclear energy program.

July 19, 2015: A major delegation from Germany visits Tehran to discuss potential areas of investment in Iran and reestablish economic ties between the two countries.

July 20, 2015: The UN Security Council unanimously approves a resolution calling for the incremental lifting of sanctions in the event that Iran meets its obligations as laid out by the deal.

Aug. 4, 2015: Tehran agrees to exchange its enriched uranium stocks with natural uranium from Russia.

Aug. 4, 2015: Iran and Armenia signs a €107-million (roughly $117 million) agreement to increase electricity exchanges between the two countries.

Aug. 21, 2015: The Yukselir Group, a Turkish company, purchases four Iranian oil refineries.

Aug. 23, 2015: The U.K. opens its embassy in Tehran.

Sept. 22, 2015: Iran signs a deal with Oman for the sale of 28 million cubic meters of Iranian gas per day to Oman for the next 15 years.

Oct. 21, 2015: Iran signs a deal with Moscow for a $5-billion loan from Russia for technological research.

Nov. 11, 2015: Tehran signs a deal with a German company for the construction of solar-energy plants in Iran.

Jan. 16, 2016: The U.S. and EU officially lift sanctions on Iran after the International Atomic Energy Agency declares that Tehran has complied with its obligations as laid out in the July 14 agreement.

March 25, 2016: Iran and French energy giant Total sign an agreement on the development of one of the Islamic republic’s largest oilfields.

April 11, 2016: Iran and Kazakhstan sign a $600-million contract to build three power plants in Kazakhstan.

May 2, 2016: South Korean President Park Geun-hye pays an official visit to Iran.

May 4, 2016: Austrian company OMV signs a deal with the National Iranian Oil Company to carry out joint hydrocarbon studies.

June 4, 2016: Turkish energy company Unit International signs a $4.2-billion deal with Iran to build seven power plants.

June 14, 2016: Iranian oil exports hit 3.8 million barrels per day.

June 21, 2016: Iran enters negotiations with eight international companies to produce liquefied natural gas.

June 21, 2016: Iran’s national carrier, Iran Air, signs a deal with Boeing for the purchase of 737- and 777-class aircraft.

Last Modified: 2016-07-15 09:22:36
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