TEHRAN (Iran News) – Barekat Charity Foundation, affiliated with the Headquarters for Executing the Order of the Imam, planned to revitalize and support 1,240 production units in deprived areas in the current Iranian calendar year (started March 20).
Last year, the Foundation invested in 742 small, medium, and large production units, which will increase to about 2,000 units in the current year, which has been named by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as “Production: Support and the Elimination of Obstacles”, ISNA reported on Saturday.
A total of 6 trillion rials (nearly $142 million at the official rate of 42,000 rials) is allocated for the support of these production firms, which will employ more than 10,000 people directly and 40,000 indirectly, according to the report.
Last year, with an investment of 2.5 trillion rials (about $59 million at the official rate of 42,000 rials), 130 manufacturing businesses entered the production cycle and over 10,000 direct and indirect jobs were created.
In Iran, where villages account for generating 20-23 percent of the value-added in the country, the development of rural areas has been always a top agenda of the governments’ activities.
The sustainable economic, social, and cultural development of the villages is one of the major priorities of the current government, and many projects implemented and underway in this regard have led to outstanding development in the rural regions.
Many other efforts have been made over the past couple of years by the government to support villagers and slow down the trend of migration from rural areas to cities while decreasing rural community dependency on one main economic sector (agriculture, forestry, energy, or mining), including rural tourism, agritourism, religious tourism, and ecotourism.
Currently, 26 percent of the country’s population lives in villages, around 39,000 villages have more than 20 households and 23,000 villages have less than 20 households.
Mohammad Omid, the vice president for rural development, said in November 2020 that for the first time in the country, the migration of people from rural areas to cities has reached zero.
A total of 220 trillion rials (nearly $5.6 billion) has been approved for the development of villages in the current year (March 2020-March 2021), Omid said.
Some 140 trillion rials (about $3.3 billion) have so far been spent, he noted, adding, the unemployment rate in rural areas has reached 7.4 percent, which has decreased by over one percent compared to last year.