Jobless rate in Iran rising despite government claims

Iran Materials 13 October 2012 11:55 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct.13/ Trend G. Mehdi/

Despite the Iranian administration's claims on creating millions of jobs in recent years, the jobless rates in 14 provinces have increased during the past year, according to the Mehr News Agency.

Single-digit unemployment rates in 7 provinces have been turned to double-digit rates and in 8 other provinces jobless rates are above 14 percent.

The hardest situation is observed in Markazi, Mazandaran, Gilan, Lorestan, and Qom provinces.

On October 9, Deputy Cooperatives, Labor and Social Welfare Minister, Mohammad Hossein Forouzanmehr, said Iran aims to create 1.1 million in the current calendar year, which ends on March 20, 2013.

Iran also plans to keep over 2.3 million job opportunities which have been created previously, the ISNA News Agency quoted Forouzanmehr as saying.

Cooperatives, Labor, and Social Welfare Minister Abdolreza Sheikholeslami had previously said that the unemployment rate is planned to be cut to seven percent by the end of the fifth socio-economic development plan (March 2016.)

To this end, 5.5 million new jobs should be created, he noted.

According to Sheikholeslami, Iran's High Council of Employment has approved allocating 45 trillion rials (some $37 billion) to job creation plans in the current calendar year.

First Vice President Mohammadreza Rahimi has said that the administration of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has created jobs as much as twice of the figure it had promised during the past two years.

Rahimi added that if non-Iranian workers leave the country, the jobless rate will not exceed one or two percent.