Kayvan – We are millionaires in Iran

Text read by Mary Peters

In the third part of our series on life in Iran, Kayvan describes salaries and expenses.

Today, the average wage of each worker is about 30 million rials, (610 €) which is the minimum wage, and in factories with a better financial situation, such as car factories, this average wage can be as high as 50 million, (1000€) and depending on each person’s experience it can go as high as 100 million. (2000 €)

The maximum retirement age can be 53, and you start work at 30 years of age. If you reach the age of 53, you can retire.

For example, if you are 53 years old and have paid 23 years of insurance, the equivalent of one year’s insurance payment will entitle you to a one-day pension. That means, you will receive 23 days of salary as your pension after retirement. The 1000€ become about 600€.

In Iran, since annual inflation is about 30-40% per year, in addition to not paying any fees to maintain our money, banks also pay up to 17-21% interest on deposits.

Looking at the exchange rate of about 50 years ago to today, the monetary value of Iranian Rial was worth 1$, today it is about 49,000 Rials for one Dollar.

The price of food in Iran the is very low. The price of a kilo of tomatoes, which is over 1€ here, is about 20 Cents in Iran, and the price of diesel is €1.20, while in Iran it is 20 cents. Yes, we are oil producers.

In Iran, we can still say, one person works, and the family eats.

I had a house in Iran and when I bought it, I paid in cash for it. I didn’t get any help from the bank, so I didn’t pay a mortgage. We saved 20% of our salary and the put rest in the current account. We could travel abroad, go mountaineering and follow our interests.

Ironically, since I have been living here, even with the salary of a little over the minimum wage, and earning more than in Iran, I have less to spend. Two people work, and the family eats. What we lose in money, however, we gain in (intellectual) freedom. It is a trade-off.

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