SearchAs the Bazaar Goes, So Goes Iran | Pacific Money | The Diplomat

As the Bazaar Goes, So Goes Iran | Pacific Money | The Diplomat...
thediplomat.com 11/07/2013 News

Keywords:#Ahmadinejad, #Akbar_Hashemi_Rafsanjani, #Bazaar, #Bazaari, #Grand_Bazaar, #Hashemi_Rafsanjani, #Hassan_Rouhani, #Inflation, #Iran, #Mahmoud_Ahmadinejad, #Pacific, #Persian, #Rafsanjani, #Rouhani, #Tehran, #Thediplomat.com

The crowded corridors of Tehran’s Grand Bazaar course straight through the heart of Iran’s complex commercial and political discourse. Its bustling and frenetic aisles, packed with haggling patrons and coated in centuries of Persian brickwork house not only copper, tapestries and spices, but the intellectual conversations that drive Iran’s politics. Though a fractious political group and notoriously coy in protest, the Bazaari community has long been at the center of the debate over Iran’s economic future. Should the country move towards free-market policies, or attempt to achieve an equitable distribution of wealth?

After eight years of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s enthusiastic policies of redistribution, Iran’s economy is hemorrhaging growth and jobs. Inflation officially stands at an intolerable 32%—although many observers believe it is higher. Price volatility makes it nearly impossible for Bazaaris to conduct any sort of planning. Hassan Rouhani’s stunning victory in last month’s presidential election suggests that the country is once again ready to embrace the more laissez-faire attitudes championed by Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and the Center for Strategic Research (CSR). The crowded corridors of Tehran’s Grand Bazaar course straight through the heart of Iran’s complex commercial and political discourse. Its bustling and frenetic aisles, packed with haggling patrons and coated in centuries of Persian brickwork house not only copper, tapestries and spices, but the intellectual conversations that drive Iran’s politics. Though a fractious political group and notoriously coy in protest, the Bazaari community has long been at the center of the debate...

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