Experts say the expected lifting of sanctions will open the door to a potential retail bonanza. AFP PHOTO / ATTA KENARE
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Two months after Iran reached a nuclear deal that will open its markets to the world, officials are warning of economic stagnation as consumers hold off on purchases of domestic goods while they wait for international brands to arrive.The deal with world powers in July will likely see banking and other sanctions lifted in 2016, making it easier for foreigners to partner with Iranian firms or export to Iran.That competition is likely to lift Iran's economy in the long term, but consumer anticipation of lower prices and foreign goods is a challenge to manufacturers used to a captive market.Campaign supporters say Iran's two carmakers, Iran Khodro and Saipa, take advantage of import tariffs to sell outdated and unsafe vehicles at inflated prices.Iran's manufacturing Producer Price Index rose just 1 percent year-on-year in the Iranian month to Aug. 22, compared to 11.2 percent in the previous year and far below inflation rates of between 14 and 17 percent.Rouhani has also told foreign companies not to treat Iran solely as an export market after sanctions.
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