Iranian Corruption Greatest Obstacle to Economic Recovery, Not Sanctions

When Iran’s economic woes make the news, the focus is often on sanctions – how sanctions have “crippled” Iran’s economy, and how their removal is a key to improving growth. In these reports, less emphasis is usually placed on Iran’s own questionable expenditures – including its sponsorship of global terror, recently confirmed by the US State Department to be the biggest in the world – or its endemic corruption.

There is widespread acceptance – including in Iran – of the fact that Iran’s economy needs a facelift. But what if the Islamic republic has more than one economy? What if its leaders, while calling for a self-sufficient “resistance economy,” are running a parallel economy of their own, paying “astronomical” salaries to heads of state-owned companies?

The extent of a corruption scandal recently exposed in the Iranian press, as well as in The Los Angeles Times, would suggest that some Iranians are doing just fine in the current state of its economy – taking home enormous sums as ordinary Iranians struggle under the weight of both international sanctions, a consequence of the Iranian regime’s actions, and said regime’s corruption, even under the “moderate” President Hassan Rouhani.

According to the reports, based on pay stubs acquired by Iranian news outlets, managers and executives at Iranian state-run companies are taking home “nearly 100 times the wage of the lowest-paid government employees.” Such a disparity is illegal in Iran – where “egalitarianism was a mantra” of the 1979 Islamic revolution.

In its article on the scandal, the LA Times suggested that the recent spate of reports on income inequality in the Iranian press reflects attempts by hardliners to undermine Rouhani ahead of his campaign for a second term next year. The Times emphasized, however, that the reports reveal that inequality is endemic to the Iranian regime as a whole, and that “the Islamic Revolution’s promises of economic equality were hollow.”

Over at oil-centric media outlet OilPrice, Mansour Kashfi put it somewhat more bluntly, writing that the distinction between moderates and hardliners in Iran is but “political subterfuge used […] to perpetuate the inherent corruption” of Iran’s “governing system.” According to Kashfi, it is this very corruption – in which both factions are complicit – which will “not only continue to oppress the Iranian people,” but also preclude business with the West. Once again, it emerges that the greatest obstacle to Iran’s sanctions relief is the Iranian regime itself.

Blogging & updating on #Iran related news- focusing on Politics, Human Rights & the Iranian nuclear Program. Followed by top Middle East Analysts, Reportes & think tanks.

Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Iranian Financial Sanctions, Iranian Politics, Media Coverage

What's on your mind?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow us in any way you like!
  Like on FacebookFollow on Twitterstumble uponFlickrPinterest

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 42,567 other followers

Visuals to Share
Visitor Count
  • 562,867
Follow us on Twitter
%d bloggers like this: