Khodrocar –Troubles an unrests of vehicle import registration started back in July 2017 and its after mass can still be felt.
• SABTARESH Shut Down
The vehicle import registration website (AKA SABTARESH) was first shut down in July 2017 based in various excuses and then opened up six months later by the order of the current minister of industry, mine and trade. Shutting down the SABTARESH for six month started to show its effects on the market by increment of the vehicles’ final price.
Some other strange things also happened during this time. One was the increment of vehicle import taxes and importation of 6 thousands vehicle not even based on import regulations. Finally it was said to be done by some members of Trade Promotion Organization of Iran.
Vehicle importers were getting used to the situations and started to take a hopeful look at the new but then came on the uncontrollable exchange rate increment and caused serious problems for importers by limiting the import registrations for importers.
Importers along with the mob started to adjust themselves to the new situation but the government suddenly banned the vehicle imports to the country due to some difficulties and malfunction in the monetary system that was presented to the importers.
• Sudden Decision Makings, the Most Serious Problem of Vehicle Importation
Troubles did not end there. Importers though that they can at least release their 20 thousand pre-ordered vehicles stuck in customs but even that is facing some other problems that now after 3 months they are still stuck there. Not even the government does not allow them to be released but also forces the owner companies to pay the exchange rate differentiation over their current price as the main condition for their release warrant. Yet, neither the importers are paying the exchange rate difference, nor the government issues a warrant for their release.
• Pre-Sanctions’ Banns
One most interesting recent event of the automotive industry was that the minister of industry, mine and trade banned the vehicle importation before the US impose sanctions against us. It is true that before US withdraw from JCPOA, there were companies leaving Iran car market slowly but there was also some shades of hope for joint ventures with some other global carmakers. Even that was ruined by shutting down the whole vehicle importation process.
• Government Still Bothers Vehicle Importation
It is two months since the vehicle importation is banned and one month since the new series of US sanctions in imposed on Iran. Yet the government does not let go of the vehicle importation. It seems it does not what to see that their decisions caused 5 thousand layoffs and destruction of import companies. Maybe there is nothing much the government can do and that is why it prefers to take care of the domestic carmakers rather than solving big increment in exchange rate and final price of the vehicles in the market.
Khodrocar Journalist: Negar Mirkarimi
Khodrocar Translator: Mostafa Anisi