Nuclear Deal Sends $150 Billion to Iran-Mostly Truth!

Nuclear Deal Sends $150 Billion to Iran-Mostly Truth!

Summary of eRumor:
Donald Trump said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that a nuclear deal with Iran would send $150 billion to Iran, even if it’s not approved by Congress.
The Truth:
This one is mostly true, but some of the details are a little fuzzy.
Donald Trump said that the $150 billion would go to Iran even if Congress didn’t approve the nuclear deal during an August 16 appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press”:

“The problem is by the time I get in there, they will have already receive the $150 billion. Do you know if the deal gets rejected they still get the money? Which is something I found out a week ago. I couldn’t believe it. If the deal gets rejected, they still get all of this money. Iran is going to be unbelievably powerful and unbelievably rich.”

Under the nuclear deal, Iran would have access to billions of dollars in assets that were frozen in foreign accounts due to previous nuclear sanctions.
But the exact amount of Iran’s windfall, and the idea that Iran would get the assets even if Congress doesn’t approve the deal, aren’t sure things.
Sanctions placed on Iran because of its nuclear program froze billions of dollars of Iran’s assets in foreign accounts. The nuclear deal would unfreeze those accounts, which the White House has estimated could send up to $150 billion to Iran.
But Obama administration officials said that Iran wouldn’t receive the full $150 billion in frozen assets because the country owes billions to China and other countries. After repaying those debts, Iran would receive about $56 billion.
Others have argued that Iran would leave the $150 billion in foreign accounts because repatriating it could hurt its economy, the Daily Beast reports:

The money is unlikely to be repatriated back to Iran. Administration officials and critics alike predict that Iran will keep much of its assets overseas, since a sudden influx of funds into the country could drive up the cost of the Iranian currency, making it more expensive for foreign buyers to purchase Iranian goods and services.

“It’s already in foreign accounts, so it’s not part of the normal budgeting process. It’s just ready cash… so you can start distributing it abroad very easily,” said Hudson Institute Senior Fellow Michael Doran. “It would be very easy for them not to repatriate it.”

Also, the idea that the nuclear deal would send $150 billion to Iran even if Congress doesn’t approve it isn’t necessarily a given. Other countries would have to lift sanctions on Iran even if the U.S. doesn’t for that to happen.
So, some of the details are up in the air, but the claim that the nuclear deal could send up to $150 billion to Iran is mostly true.