Iran's President Hassan Rouhani yesterday presented a $47 billion state budget with increased spending on lower income groups, saying US sanctions would affect people's lives and economic growth but not bring the government to its knees.
US President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of a multilateral nuclear deal with Iran in May and reimposed sanctions on it, including on its vital oil industry.
"America's goal is to bring Iran's Islamic system to its knees... and it will fail in this, but sanctions will no doubt affect people's lives, and the country's development and economic growth," Rouhani told parliament in a speech carried live on state television.
He gave the value of the nominally balanced draft budget, excluding the spending of state enterprises, at about 4,700 trillion rials for the next Iranian year, which starts on March 21.
That figure is up from about 3,700 trillion rials he had proposed for this year, but the new budget is effectively worth about half of this year's because of the weakening of Iran's currency.
Under the unofficial exchange rate used on the free market, the budget is worth about $47 billion.
Rouhani said state employees and pensioners would get a 20 percent pay rise next year, and the budget included $14 billion at a subsidised rate less than half of the market to provide cheap basic goods such as food and medicine, up from $13 billion in this year's budget.