Saturday, June 30, 2007

Iran in Chaos

It's always heart-warming to see chaos in a "belligerent Wog-country" like Iran where the government has introduced fuel restrictions. Since the rationing came into force on Tuesday night, twelve petrol stations have been torched in Tehran and there are unconfirmed reports that supermarkets and banks have also come under attack.

Mile-long queues, patrolled by police, now snake round central Tehran as drivers wait patiently for their allowance. The restrictions limit the private motorist to 100 litres per month, official taxi drivers to 800 litres. It's the first time in living memory that Iranians have had to face such restrictions and it's prompted a furious reaction. Partly because the rationing was brought in late at night with just three hours notice and partly because Iranians have grown up with idea that cheap petrol is their birthright. With the average price per litre just 8 pence (cheaper than water there), this is probably the cheapest country in the world to be a motorist.

The paradox is that Iran is the second largest oil producer in OPEC, but it lacks refineries and imports as much as 40 per cent of its petrol - to the tune of £2.5bn a year. With inflation now running at 20-30 per cent, the government is taking a stand. The rationing is predicted to last four months, maybe as long as six. And the knock-on effects could be profound. In Tehran alone, as many as 100,000 people supplement their income as unlicensed taxi drivers. In a city with limited public transport, they do a brisk trade.

Sounds to me like the US should go and liberate these poor unfortunate people once and for all.

Source: Sky News


Anonymous said...

Couldn't happen to a 'nicer' guy than Ahmadinejad, could it now?
Still, if he wants to spend money on batshit outfits like Hamas, Hezbollah, and a Nuclear weapons program instead of diversifying his economy, what does he expect?
As a note - if it really was for peaceful purposes, Iran could probably a Thorium-based technology instead of a Uranium-based one. Of course, without Uranium, he won't get weapons out of it, but hey!
At least now we know how folks in so poor a country can drive - by petrol being subsidised to 5p (8c) a litre. And they talk about us not paying the 'social cost' of it?!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps 'Mad Dinner Jacket' can get rid of inflation the same way as Mugabe is attempting, by making it illegal?
hahahahaha not too likely to work.

Anonymous said...

Nice - Ahmadinejad doesn't only want to dismantle his reputation in foreign countries but in his own as well. -- Strange tactical move.

Lieutenant General Creedon said... with all nutters. He'll feel cold steel soon enough.