Iran eases petrol rationing for summer holiday travel
IRAN’S government is boosting the petrol quota for motorists under its rationing scheme in a one-off move to enable people to travel over the summer months, state media has reported. Drivers of private cars will be allowed an extra 100 litres, on top of the 100 litres of petrol they are now limited to each month, state broadcasting said.
It appears that the 100 litres of additional petrol is a one-off gesture by the Government to help people through the summer holiday period, and will not be repeated.
‘‘ Private cars will receive a maximum of 100 litres for travelling during the summer,’’ the state broadcasting website cited a statement from the government committee overseeing the petrol rationing.
‘‘ The aim of this decision is to boost the tourist industry because of the role travel plays in the psychological health of the people,’’ it says.
Iranian families are traditionally inveterate travellers over the summer months, driving to resorts along the Caspian Sea and historic cities to escape the worst of the summer heat.
However, many have complained this year that their petrol quotas are barely sufficient for travel within Tehran and other cities, ruling out holiday trips by private cars.
The announcement of the extra petrol comes just ahead of an extended holiday weekend in Iran to celebrate the birthday of the ‘‘ hidden’’ 12th imam of Shi’ite Islam, when hundreds of thousands are expected to take the roads.
However, the spokesman of the rationing committee urged Iranians moderate in their use of petrol.
‘‘ We urge car owners to manage their consumption and use public transportation in this great national effort for the success of petrol rationing in the country,’’ Hamid Reza Akbari Moghaddam said.
Iran, OPEC’s number two oil producer, in late June finally implemented a long-awaited plan to ration petrol to decrease huge state subsidies paid for keeping pump prices low.
That announcement triggered angry protests, with demonstrators torching petrol stations and yelling slogans against the Government, but these rapidly petered out. AFP petrol to be