Iran

By Clifford R. Barnett; Wendell Blanchard et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XII
FINANCIAL SYSTEM TAXATION AND PUBLIC FINANCE

Government Revenue. In Iran, as in other countries, most of the government's revenue comes from taxation; in 1949-50, for example tax sources yielded about 70 per cent of the revenue. Non-tax revenues came mainly from the oil royalties and income earned by government enterprises, including government-owned industries and the postal and telecommunications services.

The government has not of late included oil royalties in its regular budgets. Under existing legislation (due to expire in April 1956). these revenues have instead gone to the government's Seven-Year Plan Organization (see below) for development purposes. (An exception is that under the present agreement, the oil consortium contributes to the government's National Iranian Oil Company, either in cash or in kind, 12.5 per cent of the total crude oil production.) But it has become increasingly evident that if the government is to become self-supporting and avoid further inflationary pressures, it must allocate a portion of the oil royalties to the regular government budget. Under legislation introduced in the Majlis in July 1955, a portion (probably not more than 10 per cent) of the oil revenues would be allocated to direct budgetary support.

Tax revenue comes mainly from customs duties and the various government monopolies (sugar, tobacco, etc.), as shown in Table 8.

Thus the government's revenue is supplied mainly by taxes based on domestic and foreign trade and on government monopolies, rather than on private income. Customs duties and other commodity levies are mainly on a specific basis, that is, so much per pound or square yard.

-139-

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