Iran drafts budget for next fiscal year as economy diversifies away from oil
The administrative government of President Hassan Rouhani has presented a draft budget bill to the parliament amid efforts to decrease the country’s reliance on oil despite forecasts suggesting that Iran would earn more from crude sales in the next fiscal year beginning March 21.
According to Press TV, Rouhani’s Deputy for Parliamentary Affairs Hosseiali Amiri submitted documents outlining the details of the draft budget bill for the Persian calendar year 1400 to the parliament on Wednesday.
The bill outlines over 24,000 trillion rials (nearly $95 billion) in revenues and expenditures for the government and 382 state-run companies, including nine banks and several major oil and energy companies directly run by the government.
The administrative government’s exclusive budget for the next fiscal year was estimated at more than 8,410 trillion rials (nearly $33 billion), an increase of 75 percent in rial terms compared to the last year budget.
Rouhani said during a Wednesday Cabinet meeting that the budget bill would led to a further reduction in reliance on direct oil revenues, especially for government’s day-to-day expenditures.
The president predicted, however, that Iran’s earnings from oil exports would increase in the year to March 2022 amid speculations that a next US administration would remove the illegal sanctions targeting Iran’s oil industry.
“The increase in oil revenue in next (Iranian) year would be spent on two categories of expansion of the country’s infrastructure and empowering the deprived classes,” Rouhani said, adding, “The increase in oil revenues would not be used to fund the routine budget.”
The president said the draft budget stipulates a two-fold increase in health budget to help fund around 50,000 new recruitments in the sector as it battles the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in Iran.
He said wages for civil servants would increase by 25 percent while monthly benefits given to nearly 60 million Iranians would continue over the next fiscal year.