Iranians lined up to buy basic food commodities in Tehran on Monday April 22, 2013, as food prices continued to rise. The cost of staples such as imported cooking oil and chicken jumped up as much as 60 percent after the government announced last week that it would soon increase the official dollar exchange rate for importers. Consumers are stocking up en masse before prices rise even higher.
In an interview with CNN last week, Iranian Finance Minister Seyyed Shamseddin Hosseini said that sanctions have driven up prices to some degree, but he downplayed the problems. In reality, the country’s unrelenting inflation has long been eroding consumer buying power, and the people of Iran can testify that their diets have changed significantly since the sanctions were imposed.
Many of the less fortunate are struggling to feed their families. With the price of even locally produced commodities, such as bread, now becoming less stable, there are growing concerns that price hikes could spark popular discontent in major cities in the run up to the June presidential elections.
• Christians to be able to share food with the impoverished
• That any protests would be peaceful
• Strength and endurance for those worst hit by hunger