Iran is one of the biggest countries in the world, with around 81 million inhabitants and a size of 1.6 million square kilometers. Iran is coined by its geopolitically favorable position between the Persian Gulf and the Caspian Sea. Up to now, Iran represents the most stable nation in the region. Turkey, Iraq, Armenia and Azerbaijan are located in the west and northwest. In the east and northeast are Pakistan, Afghanistan and Turkmenistan. Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait are the neighbors on the other side of the Persian Gulf. The Caspian Sea separates Iran from Russia and Kazakhstan.
Iran divides itself into various zones and regions, climatically and scenically, awarded the name “land of the four seasons”. Topographically, Iran is shaped by the central highlands and mountains of Elburz in the north, Zagros in the west and the Persian border in the east. The desert Dasht-e Kavir and Kavire Lut extend over the plateau. The land sees altitude differences of 6000 meters between the coastal and the mountainous regions. The climate has a broad range, from dry and hot regions, to moist and warm regions, and to areas with continental climate. Consequently, it is entirely possible to have snow and ice in the Alborz Mountains, as well as summer temperatures at the Persian Gulf.
With 1.6 million square kilometers, Iran provides four times the land surface as Germany, while having almost an identical number of inhabitants with 81 million people. Because of this enormous potential for land utilization and the advantageous conditions for electricity generation from renewable energies, Iran offers a huge potential for the growth of a stable, sustainable and emission-free energy supply.
The strategic location and politically advantageous positioning in the heart of the West Asia, as well as the great potential for renewable energies, raise the country to one of the central actors for sustainable and emission-free electrification in the region. Even today, Iran is the biggest electricity exporter in West Asia and has further ambitious goals to increase its exports. In order to do so, reliable power supply stations are needed which are distinguished by low variable costs.
With a gross domestic product of about 400 billion USD, Iran has grown to become one of the largest economies in Asia and especially in the Middle East. The economy is particularly based on large gas reserves and the fourth largest oil reserves in the world. In addition, the agricultural sector is highly import and a fast-growing service sector is taking form. Big potential also lies within young and well-educated people.
The Iranian economy is a hybrid of governmentally planned economy and western-style capitalistic economy. The development of the economy is supported by the government in 5-year plans, as has been done since 1989. Within these plans, many free-trade and special economic zones have been created, supporting the economic development and investment funding. The business activity in these areas grants numerous privileges, whereby trading and industrial confirmations are facilitated and investments supported. Iran has been modernized with a liberalization and privatization campaign since 2001. The liberalization focuses on the energy sector which has been opened for private investments.