Iranian Foreign Affairs Commentator and research analyst Cyrus Yaqubi have written an op-ed about the Iranian economy, where he spoke about how the crisis has been made worse under each subsequent president and advised that the problems have not been caused by sanctions but rather by the mullahs’ actions.
Yaqubi advises that during the 40 years of the regime, the country has earned some $ 1,377 billion from selling oil – $700 billion during the eight-year presidency of Ahmadinejad alone – but yet the economy is still ruined and the country is nearly bankrupt.
How? Well, Ahmadinejad spent much of the country’s income on the Revolutionary Guards, terrorism, domestic repression, and missile programs, which meant that the people never saw that money.
This only got worse during Rouhani’s subsequent eight-year presidency, with Iranians only getting more money stolen from them, as proven by the revelations that have come out over the last few years. One of these involved Sepah Bank CEO Ali Rastegar Sorkheh and Rouhani’s brother Hossein Fereydoun embezzling 3,700 billion tomans, but because of Rouhani’s involvement, he has tried to ignore or justify the corruption cases, even blaming the issues of sanctions.
Yaqubi wrote: “According to a regime official, at least 80% of the country’s problems are due to mismanagement and corruption, which have nothing to do with the sanctions. Experts say Iran’s devastating economy has never been worse in the past 42 years. Not even during the eight-year Iran-Iraq war has the situation in Iran been so critical.”
He then said that new Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi doesn’t know “anything about management or the economy”, so the problems will only get worse because of this year’s budget deficit, which will lead to banknote printing, liquidity growth, and inflation. With inflation now at 80% for some essential items and 60% of the country in poverty, this seems to be a dangerous situation indeed.
Yaqubi wrote: “This situation cannot last long, and the impoverished Iranians are facing poverty, unemployment, the COVID-19 virus, droughts, unannounced and extended blackouts, and many other economic problems. The Iranians are suppressed through the regime’s violent crackdowns. However, the Iranian people cannot be suppressed forever, and the collapse of the corrupt regime is close. Many analysts, even regime insiders, describe the current social environment as a powder keg waiting to explode.”
Thus, he advised, that many experts are already predicting that Raisi will not be in power for the entire four-year first term.