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Iranian Lawmaker Warns Of Insecurity From Currency Devaluation

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Mehdi Toghyani, the spokesperson for the Economic Committee of the Iranian Parliament, has pointed to currency instability as a factor contributing to national insecurity.

“The problem of insecurity is not solely caused by warfare instigated by enemies, but also by the currency policies that devastate the people’s morale,” Toghyani stated during a parliamentary session.

In a related development on Sunday, another lawmaker, Sodeif Badri, criticized the Central Bank of Iran for its failure to provide necessary foreign currency for raw material imports, intensifying the crisis triggered by the falling rial. Badri, a conservative politician, highlighted the dire situation in the nation’s industrial sectors, stating, “The Central Bank tells producers that it has no currency,” thereby shedding light on the shortages impacting production and economic stability.

Since arly January, the rial has lost more than 30 percent of its value against the US dollar.

The foreign exchange market saw the dollar breaching the 700,000 rials mark over the last weekend following the Islamic Republic’s attack on Israel. The rate somewhat decreased to 650,000 rials in the past few days.

The plummeting value of the rial has exacerbated inflationary pressures in Iran, where the annual inflation rate has hovered around 50 percent for the past five years. In 1978, the rial was valued at 70 rials per dollar. The devaluation over the decades has led to millions of Iranians falling below the poverty line.

Iranian authorities have often downplayed the impact of US and other international sanctions on the economy. However, the continuing high inflation rates have eroded the middle-class, with tens of millions of people now subsisting on approximately $200 a month, significantly below what is needed to maintain a middle-class lifestyle in Iran.