Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has stepped up the administration’s response to the coronavirus outbreak by announcing plans to give more than 23 million households emergency financial aid.
Addressing a meeting of the administration’s economic headquarters, held on Monday to address the consequences of COVID-19 pandemic, President Rouhani said the government has agreed to allocate around 25 trillion tomans to nearly all Iranian families receiving monthly cash subsidies.
He said more than 23 million households are going to receive the emergency financial aid to cope with the financial impact of coronavirus.
The credit for each family, worth one million tomans, will be gradually deducted from their monthly cash subsidy payments during 24 months, he added.
President Rouhani also noted that 3 million underprivileged citizens who have been under pressure in the wake of coronavirus outbreak will be receiving support packages, worth 200,000 to 600,000 tomans, in four phases.
Moreover, some 4 million low-income families will be able to apply for a grant up to two million tomans with a 4% interest rate, the president noted.
President Rouhani went on to say that the administration has ratified a decision to allocate 13 trillion tomans for the coronavirus battle, explaining that the sum of money will be allotted to the supplies needed by the Ministry of Health and Medical Education, to the knowledge-based companies, and to the needs of the medical sciences universities run by the Health Ministry.
He further made it clear that reopening of the businesses would follow a step-by-step process, stressing that resumption of economic activities must still comply with the health protocols and the smart social distancing regulations.
All businesses are duty-bound to obey the health protocols, and people are also advised to stay home, the president reiterated, warning that ignorance of the health precautions could result in a rise in the number of infections and put the country in difficult conditions.
Pointing to a Sunday visit to the exhibition of high-tech products for the fight against the novel coronavirus, President Rouhani said the local enterprises have done a great job in various sectors, such as the production of computed tomography (CT) scanners and medical ventilators.
The president also unveiled plans to give a loan to the domestic businesses that have been shut down or faced an economic slump following the closures caused by the coronavirus outbreak, saying they can apply for the loan with a 12% interest rate and repay it within two years.
However, the government aid for the small businesses is conditional on their keeping the personnel and not dismissing any employee, the president concluded.