Iranian administration fails to settle $40-million debt to tea farmers
Azerbaijan, Baku, Nov.11/ Trend G.Mehdi/
The Iranian administration has failed to settle 500 billion rials (about $40 million) debt to tea farmers in northern provinces, an official with the Iranian tea farmers' union stated.
Parviz Shabani added that the failure came as the parliament has obliged the administration to settle its debt to tea farmers.
The tea farmers are grappling with tough economic situation and have serious problems to make ends meet, he noted.
In June 2011, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said that Iran is the world's fifth largest importer of tea after Russia, the UAE, the UK and the US.
Referring to the two-fold increase in Iran's tea imports in the past 20 years, FAO said that Iran imports some 75,000 tons of tea worth $280 million each year.
In the past 20 years, Iran's tea imports have almost doubled in weight and value. In 1990, Iran's tea imports were put at 42,000 tons worth $117 million.