Iran has plans to return to a unified foreign exchange rate for its domestic currency, the rial, instead of the current multi-tier system, the Governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), Mahmoud Bahmani, said on 9 April. Iran currently has an official (or reference) rate of $1=IR12,260 fixed by the CBI; a subsidized rate at the currency trading center for certain categories of imports and foreign trade transactions which is set at a percentage below the black market or free rate; and a fluctuating free rate (currently at $1=IR35,400), determined by market forces and political developments.

Parliament has approved a short-term three-month budget starting on 21 March and no fixed rial/dollar exchange rate has been set for the remaining nine months of the year. This was confirmed by Rahim Mambini, the Deputy Head of the Strategic Planning and Control Organization affiliated to the presidential office, when he stated that a “floating rate” will prevail for a while (MEES, 8 March). (CONTINUED - 577 WORDS)