Iran Economy NewsIran: Astronomical Salaries and Public Misery

Iran: Astronomical Salaries and Public Misery

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Iran’s president Ebrahim Raisi at the cabinet meeting on November 22 claimed that: “Payment of unconventional salaries is not tolerated in any department of government offices and state-owned companies.” (State-TV News Channel, November 22, 2021)

This claim is made while the salaries of government managers have been registered up to 284 million Tomans ($10,000) this year. Those who formally receive such a large sum, or similar sums, will certainly pocket other exorbitant sums by various alibis.

This salary registered for one official is 100 times more than the salary of a worker. Most of these astronomical salaries have been received from officials of the regime’s Revolutionary Guard and the people close to the office of the regime’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei.

The corruption is so huge that one of the regime’s MP was forced to ask the regime’s president to take action and said: “Why are you stand on ceremony in dealing with the mafia? (ICANA, December 8, 2021)

And the state-run daily Jomhouri Eslami (jepress) wrote: “According to published reports, the monthly salary of 284 million Tomans in one office and 184 million Tomans in another office is challenging the 3 million Tomans salary of some employees. We know that up to 10 percent of people receive super-astronomical and astronomical salaries, and the other 90 percent are below the poverty line.” (State-run daily Jomhouri Eslami (jepress), December 19, 2021)

These super-rich people are the ones whose villas and palaces’ prices are skyrocketing, which of course is just part of their luxury life. They have looted so much that even their cemeteries are becoming a luxury.

“A grave in the cemetery of the rich is $90,000, or that some of the officials’ children misused $8 billion in car imports, or the former head of the central bank says that the value and wealth of the officials’ children are more than the central bank’s reserves.” (State-run website Bahar News, December 13, 2021)

And one of the regime’s MPs Ezatollah Yousefian about the inequality in the country said: “In the 2022 budget, we did not see the justice that Raisi was talking about. The thirteenth government ignored the issue of astronomical salaries.” (state-run website Didban-e Iran, December 8, 2021)

The regime’s parliament is making for some time noises about the astronomical salary law inquiry.

If this plan is approved, while its content is not fully known, it will not be implemented, and like many other plans and bills, it will be forgotten, because many elements of this regime will become the main targets, and the dismissal of some low-ranking officials or the reduction of their salaries will not solve anything and the injustice in the country will remain.

The problem in this regime is that corruption and looting are institutionalized and if someone will solve any problem it must first start from the regime’s supreme leader and its office.

The regime’s government is set to add a small amount to the workers’ salaries next year, even though this small increase is far from the official inflation rate, which has created a huge class division in society which has reached the point of explosion. The result of this situation is the expansion of protests of the different strata.

In recent days, one of the slogans of retirees in Tehran was ‘astronomical salaries, public misery.’ This slogan is not only the slogan of Tehran retirees but also the slogan of many employees, workers in different cities. This is at a time when the steady rise in inflation and commodity prices has further worsened the situation of poor people.

The expansion of poverty among the people is such that in recent days the regime’s media warn of the end of the threshold of tolerance of the people and acknowledge that the livelihood of a large part of the society has reached an unbearable point.

“There is news under the skin of this society that is extremely alarming. The patience of the people is such that if it comes to an end, it will cause a catastrophe. If a revolution is on the way, it will be a revolution of the poor against those with astronomical salaries and the aristocracy, an event that will inevitably occur if the current situation continues.” (state-run website Didban-e Iran, December 8, 2021)

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