Iran will pay 1.5 million rials (less than $6) of cash handouts to 30 million citizens to help them during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan as food prices keep rising.
The especial Ramadan handout that will be paid out Friday night is distinct from a monthly payment of less than $2 and covers about 60 million people.
The Ramadan handouts, which will total to about $180 million, suggest that authorities believe there are over 30 million people in the country who need the $6-cash handout.
The number of recipients and amount of the government’s handouts vary. For example, the cash handouts for the anniversary of the 1979 revolution was 1 million rials (less than $4) and was paid to 34 million people and the handout for the Iranian new year was 1.5 million rials (less than $6) but only 12 million Iranians received it.
The government is trying to increase the monthly cash handouts to $3-4 in the new Iranian year (from March 21) to compensate for the elimination of an $8 billion subsidy for food and medicine in its new budget.
A typical worker gets around $120 to $200 a month, while rents and other daily necessities have risen with the fall of the national currency, keeping pace with the value of the US dollar.
The current annual inflation rate hovers at around 40 percent.