Iran Country Overview
Iran, officially the Islamic Republic of Iran. State of the Middle East (Asia), was known until 1935 as Persia, although today this name is still valid and accepted along with that of Iran. It borders Pakistan and Afghanistan to the east; Turkmenistan to the northeast, the Caspian Sea to the north, and Azerbaijan and Armenia to the northwest; Turkey and Iraq to the west and finally to the coast of the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman to the south.
It is the eighteenth largest country in the world with an area of 1,648,195 km² and has a population of over seventy million.
The name Iran is a cognate of Aryan,  and means the “land of the Aryans”. It is an Islamic republic since the 1979 referendum, which abolished the hereditary monarchy.
According to PHARMACYLIB, the exploitation of oil in the twentieth century has caused that both the extraction of crude oil, its refining and the production of derivative products, is the main source of wealth of modern Iran. Currently Iran has a wide variety of its own technology, with factories for automobiles, tractors and machinery in general.
Most of the population lives from a self-sufficient primary sector. Sheep farming predominates, in order to obtain wool for making Persian rugs. Agricultural land is used for cereals (such as wheat), cotton, and tobacco.
The services and commercial sector is represented by small private companies.
As of 2007, Iran had a population of 65,397,000. Life expectancy is 70 years. 79.4% of the population is literate. The average number of children per woman is 1.71.
Almost two-thirds of the population speaks some Indo-Iranian language, although the only official language is Persian, written in a modified Arabic alphabet. Ethnically 61% are Persian, 9% Kurdish and 2% Baloch. Within the Turkic group, Azeris (24%) and Turkmen (2%) stand out, but there are also Arabs (3%), Armenians, ethnic Jews, and Assyrians. Arabic is taught in schools, as it is the language in which the Koran is written.
The majority are Muslims: 89% Shiite duodecimal, the official religion of the state and 9% Sunni. The minority religions include the Bahá’í Faith, Zoroastrianism (indigenous religion), Judaism and Christianity.
It is a country dominated by the Iranian plateau, surrounded by various mountain ranges, such as the Zagros Mountains (in the South-West) and the Elburz (in the North), the latter being the Damavand at 5,610 m, the highest point from the country. The main plains are those along the coast of the Caspian Sea (Aralo-Caspian depression) and the Mesopotamian depression in the Persian Gulf along the border with Iraq at Arvandrud (Chat-el-Arab).
It has a desert or dry continental climate. All of Iran is arid or semi-arid, except on the Caspian Sea coast where a subtropical climate dominates.
The main rivers of Iran are the Sefid-Rud, the Karun and the Hilmand. The main cities are Tehran (the capital), Tabriz, Mashhad, Esfahan, Shiraz, Abadan, Ahwaz and Kermanshah.
45% of Iran’s largest industrial firms are based in Tehran, as well as about 30% of the country’s public sector force, of which at least half of those workers work for the Iranian government. Much of the rest of the workers are shop owners, shippers, and factory workers.
At present, most of the modern industries of the city are dedicated to the manufacture of automobiles, electronics, electrical equipment, weapons, textiles, sugar, cement and chemical products. The city is an important center for the sale of carpets and furniture. To the south of the city and near Ray there is an oil refinery.
The Iranian capital depends a lot on private cars, buses, motorcycles and taxis, being one of the cities that most need cars in the world, it also has a metro and three airports, the Mehrabad International Airport, the Imam International Airport. Khomeini, and Ghal’eh Morghi Airport.
Tehran provides all levels of education and due to its magnitude and quality, the city is the largest and most important educational center in Iran, with more than fifty large universities and a large number of higher education institutions. The University of Tehran is the oldest and largest state university in Iran. Tehran is also home to several religious colleges and seminaries as well as the largest military academy in the country.