, the goals of the 1404 Perspective Document have been to determine the values and aims of medicinal plants development in export and its effective role in the well-being of the country.
Iran, an outstanding country with a top rank from the viewpoint of rich flora and biological diversity, has 11 out of 13 known climates in the world. According to the Comprehensive Scientific Plan of Iran, the fundamental value is on the system of science and technology, the National Document of medicinal plants and traditional medicine has presented some statistics and figures regarding export and progress in this respect in order to prepare a background knowledge for activities leading to the development of medicinal plants and traditional medicine.
World trading in medicinal plants has risen from 60 billion dollars in 1996 to 100 billion dollars in 2010, and according to the estimation of the World Bank, in 2050, the financial circulation and global trades based on and centered around medicinal plants and herbal medicine will reach up to approximately 5000 billion dollars.
Traditional medicine, in most of the developed countries is supported, to various extents, by their governments, and has had a good share in the well-being of their people. The traditional medicine in China, has 40 percent of the health care service of the country. There is a full insurance coverage for the cost of treatment, drugs, and traditional medicine service in Japan, China, Korea and Vietnam. Also, in Germany, Australia, Norway, the Great Britain, Canada, and the United States the costs are covered partially by the insurance companies.
In order to revive and develop medicinal plants and traditional medicine in Iran with the optimal use of all the national resources, it is vital and inevitable to have a Scientific Document to include all the points due to Iran’s rich history in traditional medicine, and since there is an increase in the global trading of medicinal plants and their productions, also in the Comprehensive Scientific Plan of Iran we have the first priority for medicinal plants in the field of basic and applied sciences and traditional medicine, and medicinal plants are the second priority in the health care sectors.
A medicinal plant is defined as: A plant that either directly or indirectly, all or partly, fresh or dried, or its extracted active compound, is used for prevention or cure, in human beings, animals or other plants.
Fundamental values of Medicinal Plants in Iran
The following are the fundamental values of National Document for Medicinal Plants and Traditional Medicine. These values are in accordance with the fundamental values of science and technology system of the Comprehensive Scientific Plan of Iran and its emphasis on the prevalence of Islamic monotheistic ideology, the pivot of justice, morality, creating wealth, harmony with the environment and the importance of dignity:
1- The belief that the power to heal is exclusive to God and that medicine is just a means to fulfill God’s will to heal the sick
2- The combination of Iranian traditional medicine with the ethical teachings and religious commitments and the necessity to precisely observe the ethical rules in all stages of teaching, researching and presenting medical services in the highest of levels
3- The pivot of justice in medicinal plants and traditional medicine development and the use of their outcomes and products
4- A strong belief in the maintenance of health and hygiene of body and soul in the religious teachings
5- Ethics and morality, prioritizing the public interests to the individual or the group’s benefit, strengthening the spirit of cooperation and the acceptance of the responsibilities by the scientific groups and their relevant sectors
The following are the vision of medicinal plants of Iran according to 1404 Perspective Document
In order for the twenty year Perspective Document of the Islamic Republic of Iran to take place, in the year 1404 of solar calendar equal to 2025, the medicinal plants and traditional medicine’s division must have the properties below:
1- They must benefit from the domestic material and spiritual resources, local and developed infra-structure and advantages, and to have a greater share of manpower in the country and the region
2- They must generate economic value added, be able to compete on the global level, and achieve the top rank in the region for the export of medicinal plants and their products
3- They must be the avant-garde in the science and technology of medicinal plants and traditional medicine and earn the top scientific rank in the region
4- They must be trustworthy and honorable for all the sectors of the society of Iran and the rest of the world
5- They must be thriving and innovative and have an effective and prominent role in the health care system of the country by sensible scientific methods based on observation, safety, quality, effectiveness and accessibility to individuals in the society
6- They must become a scientific reference in the world, with the reliance on medicinal, native and endemic plants of Iran, and its rich written medical heritage