At a time when all economic data in Iran shows that people’s livelihood baskets are shrinking, particularly among the lower-income deciles, and many goods, even the most basic, such as rice and dairy, are disappearing from weekly shopping carts, the government is promoting the slogan of “impossible inflation control.”
A minimal living basket
According to the Iranian opposition group The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), and the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran), mullahs regime, instead of providing the working people and their families with a minimal living basket, they are attempting to highlight inflation management as a government strategy.
The inflation rate in August 2021 was 45.2%
The inflation rate in August 2021 was 45.2 percent, according to the National Statistical Center of Iran, representing a one percent increase over the previous month.
In August 2021, spot inflation reached 43.2 percent, implying that households in the country spent 43.2 percent more on a “uniform set of goods and services” than they did in August 2020.
The key ‘foods, beverages, and tobacco’ group saw its spot inflation rate rise 1.5 percent to 58.4 percent, while the ‘Non-Edible Goods and Services’ group saw its rate decrease 1.3 percent to 36.1 percent.
The nutritional crisis
The official statistics reveal that the nutritional crisis afflicting the working class and wage earners (including employed, retired, informal, seasonal, and project workers) is a significant one, with lower-income households suffering as a result of the cost of food.
Of course, housing costs and housing rent are not included in the Statistical Center of Iran’s statistical basket, and the increase in housing costs is not included in inflation calculations, so if the real increase in the rent rate is calculated, we will have point-to-point inflation of more than 100 percent.
Households spent around 60% more
However, because of the smaller basket, households spent around 60% more on necessary items in August 2021 than they did in August of the previous year. During the same time span, the wage growth will not exceed 40%.
Now, how does the Labor Minister declare that salaries cannot be raised because firms are losing money and should resort to inflation control when the inflation rate (even in the most diluted calculations allowed by the Statistical Center of Iran) is permanently rising?
The real demands of people’s baskets
The rate of raw foods and beverages in the food basket is used to calculate the livelihood basket, which is unrealistic and does not meet the real demands of people’s baskets, which is the “real food.”
The overall livelihood basket is 8.866 million tomans, and if we compare it to the calculated livelihood basket for wage negotiations in 2021, which was rated 6.895 million tomans for comparison, we arrive at a different number of 1.970 million tomans.
“livelihood crisis” is widening and worsening
In the most basic calculations, the cost of living in the first five months increased by 1.970 million tomans, and the level of coverage of telecommunications has increased by 1.970 million tomans. That means that the average person’s salary only lasts roughly 13 days.
Overall, the so-called “livelihood crisis” is widening and worsening. While inflation continues to rise with no end in sight, as all official data show, the minimum livelihood basket rate has risen to around eleven million tomans, and workers spend nearly 19 days per month without purchasing power, according to many officials, while the figures calculated in this text are the most optimistic figures.