Iran’s currency is collapsing under threat of nuke deal being rescinded by Trump, possibility of new sanctions
Central bank set single exchange rate at 42,000 rials to the dollar.
PressTV, which is affiliated with the Iranian regime, has reported that the government has revealed a plan to change to the Euro “as its official reporting foreign currency” as the country’s rial continues to plummet.
The rial’s problems have caused citizens to rush to the banks to take out US dollars. This week, 60,000 rials could be purchased for just one American dollar.
The slump comes at a time when many believe President Trump will scrap the Iranian nuclear deal put into place by President Obama. Trump’s final decision will come in early in May. For the past several months, “Iranians have rushed to buy hard currencies and gold coins in recent months” due to the possibility of America leaving the deal.
Other causes include “political feuding” and some have accused traders “of deliberately driving the currency lower with speculative bots.” It’s remained mostly unreported, but if you look on social media, there are still protests against the regime around Iran.
After the latest plummet, First Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri established a single foreign exchange rate at 42,000 rials to the dollar. From the BBC:
“We do not recognise any other rate,” Iran’s first Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri said on a late television broadcast.
“Anyone trading at any other rate will be considered a smuggler,” he added.
The old official rate was costly to the government, and therefore limited to imports of selected goods that were deemed necessary.
Just this week the government said it could no longer offer it to students studying abroad, and they now have to buy foreign currency from the open market to pay for their tuition.
Then the Central Bank of Iran announced the change from the dollar to the Euro. From PressTV:
Valiollah Seif, the governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), was reported to have said the plan would be implemented immediately after the approval of the government.
“Changing the reporting currency of the country is very serious …. This will be reasonable because it will have a primary effect on the economy,” Seif told reporters after a cabinet meeting. “An approval [to go ahead with changing the reporting currency] will be adopted by the government soon and will be officially announced to the public accordingly.”
The Financial Times reported that the regime restricted Iranians to only hold €10,000 outside of banks:
Many foreign exchange shops refused to trade any currencies on Tuesday. The strong presence of security forces on Ferdowsi street, the main centre of forex dealings in downtown Tehran, created an intimidating atmosphere for traders and buyers.
“I want to convert my rials into dollars and put them under my pillow,” said Yadollah, a 31-year-old van driver who sold his car last week and hoped to use 750m rials to buy more than $17,000. “The future is gloomy and it will become horrifying after the US withdraws from the nuclear accord. I cannot afford to keep rials.”
Iran and Turkey reached an agreement to trade in local currencies instead of the dollar or Euro. Medhi Kasrraeipour from the CBI said this route is only natural since “the use of the dollar is banned for Iran and traders are literally using alternative currencies in transactions.” On March 1, Iran officially blocked imports priced in the US dollar.
Russia is also thinking about entering a deal with Iran and Turkey to receive oil payments in local currencies. Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak said that, “There is a common understanding that we need to move towards the use of national currencies in our settlements. There is a need for this, as well as the wish of the parties. This concerns both Turkey and Iran – we are considering an option of payment in national currencies with them. This requires certain factors in financial and economic sector and in banking sector.”DONATE
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