It is estimated that Iran will be on the receiving end of billions of dollars in investment from America and Europe once the nuclear deal is implemented, and sanctions have been lifted. And Iranian businesswomen are ready to become pivotal leaders and make their own gains.
“The presence of women in Iran in the workplace and in higher education is much more serious now compared to when I first started,” says Mona Hajialiasghar who has a master’s degree in business management from Iran’s all-female Alzahra University. “With younger women entering the market, firstly their numbers are much higher, but also their confidence is much higher.”
Though there have been some restrictions on women’s rights since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, there have been no limitations on education, voting and driving. Of note, three of President Hassan Rouhani’s vice presidents are women.
The nuclear deal “means economic empowerment for women in Iran,” says Suzanne DiMaggio, director of the Iran Initiative at New America Foundation in New York. “Already today there are more women than men studying at Iranian universities, and they also work for a living and can own businesses and vote, so once sanctions are lifted and Iran reintegrates into the global economy, that should help women.”