Iran’s Minister of the Economy has announced that the Central Bank will not be responsible for providing foreign currency for students pursuing their education abroad.
Other than students who receive government bursaries, students attending foreign universities will no longer be able to receive education funds from their families at the Central Bank exchange rate.
Since the rial began its steep decline against foreign currencies some eight months ago, it is being traded at more than 25,000 rials per dollar in the open market, while the government banks offer an exchange rate of just over 12,000 rials. The special exchange rate is also offered for necessary imports.
Minister Shamseddin Hosseiny was quoted by ISNA as saying: “Some students have decided on their own to go abroad for studies and they are not receiving government bursaries, and clearly the Central Bank has no obligation to provide foreign currency for them and they can use the open market.”
Reports indicate that even bursary recipients have had difficulty in receiving their money.
Last month, the head of the economic commission of Parliament, who had proposed scrapping foreign currency allotments to travellers at Central Bank rates, said that foreign currency will no longer be provided for unnecessary matters, including education funds.
With the intensification of sanctions on Iran, the Islamic Republic appears to be facing a shortfall in its foreign currency revenues.