Agency: Iranian state-run bodies grant $225 million in illegal bonuses
Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct.21/ Trend G.Mehdi/
Iranian state-run bodies granted over 2.76 trillion rials (some $225 million) in bonuses in the calendar year 1389 (March 2010-March 2011) against the law to their employees, the Fars News Agency reported.
The budget act related to the mentioned year emphasizes any payment by state-run organizations and civil entities to executives in the form of bonuses in cash or in kind is illegal.
In its semi-annual World Economic Outlook, the IMF forecast Iran's gross domestic product would shrink 0.9 percent this year after a 2 percent growth in 2011.
Its prediction for this year was a downgrade from a forecast of 0.4 percent growth in its last report in April, but the IMF projected GDP would expand next year by 0.8 percent.
The IMF expects inflation to moderate to 21.8 percent in 2013 from 25.2 percent in 2012; many private economists, however, think inflation is well over 30 percent.
It predicted unemployment would hit 14.1 percent this year and 15.6 percent next, up from 12.3 percent in 2011.
Iran's current account, its balance of trade in goods and services, is expected to enjoy a surplus of 3.4 percent of GDP this year and 1.3 percent next year, the IMF said.
That would be a big drop from a surplus of 12.5 percent in 2011, but the forecast still suggests it may not face a crippling balance of payments crisis due to the sanctions.
In July 2011, before Western sanctions were tightened, the IMF issued a report praising the Iranian government's decision to slash energy and food subsidies, calling the policy "a unique opportunity for Iran to reform its economy and accelerate economic growth and development".
Some private economists called the report over-optimistic, saying it underestimated the risk of the subsidy cuts causing runaway inflation and damaging consumer spending power.