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Falling currency raises costs for Iranian pilgrims

Source: Radio Zamaneh

Iran's Pilgrimage and Haj Organization says the cost of pilgrimage travel has risen due to the fall in the value of the national currency against foreign currencies.

Pilgrims circling Kaba in Mecca, Saudi Arabia

The head of the organization, Bajamin Shokouhfar, said his office has been negotiating with the Central Bank for subsidized foreign currencies that would make travel more affordable for pilgrims.

The Mehr news agency announced that many Iranians who had been on a pilgrimage wait list for several years have had to decline their turn due to the sudden rise in costs.

Statistics released by the Pilgrims and Haj Organization indicate that the latest caravan is only half full, even though registration has been open for more than a week.

Shokouhfar reports that until last year the organization was allotted subsidized foreign currency for pilgrimage costs, but the subsidy is no longer available to his organization.

In the past two years, Iran's national currency has lost more than three times its value against foreign currencies, causing all prices to rise sharply.

... Payvand News - 04/30/13 ... --

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