Iran to send out gold to encourage population increase
Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct.17/ Trend F.Milad/
Iran has voiced its plans to send gold coins to all the mothers who give birth to an infant, in order to encourage people to make more babies, the Fars News Agency reported.
Iran has decided to get rid of its birth control program completely in a radical policy change envisioned to create a baby boom that could more than double its current population.
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei recently said that the two-decade old policy of controlled growth must end and that Iran's target is to increase its population to 150 to 200 million.
The policy of population restriction should definitely be revised and the authorities should build the culture in order to abandon the current status of one child, two children [per family]," he said.
"The figure of 150 or 200 million was once stated by the Imam [Khomeini] and that is the correct figure that we should reach." He added.
After the announcement was made, Marzieh Vahid Dastjerdi, the health minister, told Iranian journalists that the funding had been withdrawn and that the 190 billion rials ($15.5 million) would now be used to encourage bigger families.
"The budget for the population control program has been fully eliminated and such a project no longer exists in the health ministry," she said. "The policy of population control does not exist as it did previously."
The country's current population is about 75 million, according to recent census. Iran also topped the global list of countries facing the greatest drop in fertility rates since 1980, according to data published in 2009 by the United Nations.