News ID: 209192
Published: 1223 GMT January 31, 2018

MPs pass general outlines of budget bill

MPs pass general outlines of budget bill

Iran's Parliament passed the general outlines of the budget bill for the next fiscal year (March 2018-19) after initially rejecting it over concerns that the proposed cuts could hit the vulnerable strata the hardest.

The bill for the fiscal Iranian year of 1397 which will begin on March 21 received 182 votes in favor, 73 against and six abstentions, IRNA reported on Wednesday.

The proposed budget was voted down 120 to 83 on Sunday, with MPs expressing dissatisfaction with belt-tightening measures, including cuts in key government subsidies.

They cited living conditions of state employees, stating that the proposed cuts were conducive to more economic hardships.

The Parliament has recommended several key amendments, which are to be discussed in detail in the coming days.

They included keeping gasoline prices unchanged and pegging the official exchange rate of the national currency against the US dollar at 35,000 rials.

The MPs further proposed tax exemptions for civil servants earning below 23 million rials ($522) per month.

Rouhani had sent the draft budget to the parliament in November on the backdrop of general grievances over the rising costs of living and stagnant salaries.

   
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