As reported by Reuters, Iran's two most powerful figures offered contrasting visions for the economy in speeches marking Iranian new year on Sunday, with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei calling for self-reliance and President Hassan Rouhani urging cooperation with the world.

In Nowruz speeches, Khamenei and Rouhani looked back on the past year, which saw sanctions on Iran lifted under a nuclear deal with world powers, and agreed the economy should be a top priority in the new Iranian year.

But while Rouhani said further engagement with other countries was the key to economic growth, Khamenei reaffirmed his commitment to the concept of a "resistance economy" centred on self-sufficiency.

The competing messages underscore differences between the two leaders, who both subscribe to the principles of the Islamic Republic but have divergent ideas about how it should engage with the global economy and in particular Western powers.


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