Iran pays no subsidy to production sector in H1 - report
Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct.27
By Fatih Karimov - Trend:
The Iranian administration has paid no subsidy to the production sector (industry, mining agriculture) in the current Iranian calendar year, which began on March 21, a report by Iran's Targeting Subsidies Organization said.
This is while the Subsidy Reform Plan had envisaged 100 trillion rials (about $3 billion) to be earmarked for boosting domestic production, improving the public transportation, and implementing energy saving projects, Iran's ISNA news agency reported on October 27.
However, Vice President for planning and strategic supervision Mohammad Bagher Nobakht has recently said that paying subsidy to the production sector in the second half of the year is on the agenda.
Some $450 million (equals 30 percent of the approved budget) has been paid in subsidies in the six-month period to improve health indices and reduce people's medical treatment costs, according to the report.
Also, $400 million has been paid to the Ministry of Health.
Ahmad Davoodi, the presidential office's director for infrastructure affairs, said in September that $1.5 billion has been allocated for the health and medical treatment sector, and $3.2 billion has been allocated for the production sector.
The subsidy reform plan, which was called "the biggest surgery to the economy", was put into operation in September 2010.
According to the plan, the subsidy on food and energy is removed gradually, and the government allocates a portion of the amount saved to people and industry.
Subsidies account for 74 percent of the cost of electricity and fuel in Iran, ranking the country in fourth place among members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), according to the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).