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Is inequality rising in Rouhani’s Iran?

With the nuclear deal in hand, President Hassan Rouhani’s greatest challenge in the run-up to the 2017 presidential elections appears to be ensuring not only that the dividends of his foreign policy focus are reaped, but that they are evenly distributed.
An Iranian woman looks on as she stands next to a Benetton shop window in northern Tehran October 24, 2010. While ordinary Iranians struggle to survive international sanctions and deepening economic uncertainty, the gap has widened between the disadvantaged and those who can afford to travel to Paris for a haircut. The extravagant tastes of wealthy Iranians show no signs of abating in spite of tougher sanctions targeting the Islamic state over its disputed nuclear programme. Several new shopping malls packe
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Last month, the Statistical Center of Iran (SCI) released a report showing that economic inequality had increased during the Iranian calendar year 1393 (March 21, 2014 - March 20, 2015). The rise in inequality comes after four years of continuous decline.

The news is unwelcome for President Hassan Rouhani, whose program of economic reform is under fire from his political opponents for failing to improve life for ordinary Iranians. 

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