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The Endemic Corruption in Iran’s Government-Run Companies

Iran regime's government-run companies designed to drive economic growth and provide essential services to the nation, have become breeding grounds for corruption.

In the realm of the Iran regime’s political and economic landscape, where government-run companies hold significant sway, a disturbing reality lurks behind the façade of state control and public service. These entities, designed to drive economic growth and provide essential services to the nation, have become breeding grounds for corruption.

As we delve into the depths of this hidden realm, it becomes evident that corruption within these entities is not an isolated incident, but a systemic issue deeply ingrained in their DNA.

From embezzlement to nepotism, the tendrils of corruption extend their reach, infiltrating every aspect of these organizations. The exploitation of contracts, the misuse of public resources, and a glaring lack of transparency have become the hallmarks of the Iran regime’s government-run companies, as those in power exploit their positions for personal gain.

One of the most alarming aspects of this web of corruption is how it undermines the foundations of a fair and equitable society.

By tapping off funds meant for public welfare, these individuals divert resources away from essential services such as healthcare, education, and infrastructure development. The consequences are dire, as citizens suffer the brunt of dilapidated public facilities, inadequate social services, and a widening wealth gap.

According to the state-run daily Arman, the activities of these state-run companies account for nearly two-thirds of the country’s budget.

This daily recently wrote, “According to the six-month performance report at the beginning of 2022, 156 state-owned companies are generating losses, and including the budget of loss-making companies less than the real number in the annual budget bills cause lack of transparency and unrealistic budget of state-owned companies.”

Such comments are shedding light on the gravity of the issue—instances of influential figures colluding to secure lucrative contracts for themselves or their associates surface with alarming regularity. Meanwhile, hardworking people, devoid of connections and resources, are left to navigate a treacherous landscape where merit often takes a backseat to favoritism.

Arman added, “According to MP Rezaei Kochi, the lack of transparency in the financial statements of state-owned companies has created widespread ambiguities and corruption, such as the irregular payment of salaries to the managers of these companies. Also, hiring outside the norm and employing incompetent people is one of the ugly and disgusting issues that exist in the working and financial flow of these companies.”

Even the regime’s Minister of Economy has called the situation of state-owned companies pathetic and said:

“One of the first steps of the Ministry of Economy was to make public managers accountable by clarifying the financial statements of state-owned companies. The public property of the people was in the hands of managers who managed in a safe haven and a dark backyard, made losses, and determined rewards for themselves.

“Also, one of the problems of these companies is their loss. Due to the government management that governs the country’s big companies, they are facing a lot of accumulated losses.

“This way of economic governance, where the government is present in all dimensions, will eventually cause irreparable consequences, one example of which is that most state-owned companies are operating at a loss.”

The economic consequences for the people and the country of this pervasive corruption within the regime cannot be ignored. No foreign investors are taking the risk to engage with regime-run entities, even the slightest potential avenues for economic growth are stagnant. Moreover, the growing erosion of public trust in the regime cripples the country’s progress and has eliminated a transparent and accountable system that promotes development and prosperity for all.

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