With the start of the presidential election season in Iran, and the war between the candidates to gain power, there has been a flood of revelations of the officials’ corruption and their looting of the people’s wealth and other pains imposed on the people.
After five decades of inflation and high prices and the people’s livelihood basket shrinking, these candidates are ignoring the reality of the country, people’s situation and the corrupt and destructive behavior of the government’s institutions and offices, by relaying their populist slogans.
The situation is so dramatic that one of the state-run dailies wrote that the continuation of this path: “It depletes social capital and plunges the country into a terrible abyss due to the lack of participation of the people in major decision-making.” (Sabzineh, May 15, 2021)
Attacking the officials’ ignorance, the daily added: “Officials are getting involved in factional and childish fights every day in order to show their so-called more righteousness, and the people are sinking deeper and deeper into poverty and deprivation every day, regardless of these childish fights. The question of the people is that you, who were in charge during the four decades of the revolution, what did you do that the situation in the country is like this and now you claim to organize the country in a few months?” (Sabzineh, May 15, 2021)
And attacking the officials’ ridiculous promises, it added: “The promise of a subsidy of one or 2.5 million tomans is not a positive factor, because the more you give, the more you will take out of the nation’s pocket.” (Sabzineh, May 15, 2021)
The list of the facts of the corrupt behaviors and deceit by the officials is as long as the 42-year existence of this regime. To the extent that economic government officials warn that if no solution is found to this critical situation, “the country’s economy is on a path of regression.” (State-run website Bazaar, May 15, 2021)
However, the officials do not leave any opportunity to gain economic benefits, and they stabilize and expand it, of course, from the pockets of the people.
One of the most damaged parts of the country’s economy is the national production, as the state-run daily Eghtesad-e-Ma on May 15 wrote: “Rising production costs and lack of working capital have halved production capacity in workshops, factories and enterprises, which is a serious threat to national production.”
Underlining this situation, Massoud Daneshmand, a member of Iran’s chamber of commerce and secretary general of the Iranian House of Economics, said:
“Small, medium and sometimes large industries of the country along with economic enterprises and production centers have become very weak these days due to the carelessness and inefficiency of decision makers in managing resources towards the production sector. And being careless on this issue, we will undoubtedly see more closure of factories and workshops.” (State-run website Bazaar, May 15, 2021)
Attacking the state-affiliated banks as one of the reasons of this situation, he added: “Banks are also reluctant to support industries and manufacturing centers, as many seek profitable investments, agiotage and creating corporations, through their subsidiaries, and pursue a path that has a high and sometimes instantaneous return on investment.” (State-run website Bazaar, May 15, 2021)
One of the most tragic and sometimes ridiculous parts of the economic story of Iran is the behavior of the officials.
Farshad Momeni, a government economist, said: “In a country where the exchange rate has risen between six and 10 times in four years, an official in charge of protecting the value of the national currency has stated that he opposes repression of the exchange rate. As a result of these inflationary policies, we will face a crisis of effective demand from households and the spread and deepening of corruption and inequality, which will eventually lead to a collapse in production capacity.” (State-run daily Arman, May 15, 2021)
He also points to the unreasonable attempts of the ministers of Rouhani’s government to justify these conditions:
“A minister plans to raise some key prices. They ask him what do you think about the price of these properties? The answer is that prices are in the hands of God. If your theology is like understanding an economic issue, then God should forgive us. Another person in the same cabinet says a few days later that we raised the price of the dollar ourselves in order to punch the United States hard.
“Is there really no one, who can tell him that when you raise the price of the dollar, you are destroying the future of the economy, bankrupting the producers, making the people miserable?” (State-run daily Arman, May 15, 2021)
Now even if this regime is successful in pulling out Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s desired candidate from the ballot boxes, it is definite that this will not change anything in the people’s lives, and this corrupted train is moving in a closed circle, dissidents say.