A senior Iranian agriculture official says one of the reasons behind a sudden rise in the prices of agricultural produce in Iran is Turkish businessmen who come to Iran to buy products wholesale.
Incontrovertibly, rainfall and transportation problems also contribute to increasing prices of a product. Nevertheless, at a time when production is at a good level and products are bought from producers at rather low prices, there should be other reasons behind a sudden increase in prices.
Some experts believe unregulated exports are to blame for the sudden rise in the price of a product despite its availability on the market.
Reza Nourani, the head of Iran’s National Agricultural Produce Association, told ILNA that unregulated exports deal a serious blow to production and the market.
“When there is no supervision over exports, profiteers using temporary business cards step into any market which ensure their interests,” he said.
He stressed the presence of profiteers at the agricultural produce market is more destructive than any other market.
“It is very important to maintain the balance in the agricultural produce market, given its impact on food security,” he noted.
“A lack of supervision over exports has led to Turkish businessmen coming to [Iran’s] fruit and vegetables markets, and they buy products wholesale at these markets every now and then, so that a certain product is suddenly rare to find on the market,” he said.
Under such circumstances, the official added, it is natural that prices go up.
He said these businessmen also go to farmers’ fields.
“In the season when a special product is harvested, Turkish businessmen go to farms in a province and buy the produce before it is offered on the market. So, we see the product does not leave the province and does not reach consumers on the market,” he noted.
He said the absence of domestic traders is the reason why foreign businessmen are throwing their weight around in the agricultural produce market.
The official underlined strict laws and regulations are the reason why local businessmen have cut down on their activities in the agricultural produce market.