150,000 old taxis plying roads across Iran

May 29, 2019

TEHRAN – The situation of clunker taxis in Iran is worrying, as some 150,000 of them are plying the roads, making a disproportionate impact on the country’s air quality, Morteza Zameni, director general of urban taxis union has said.

Renovation process must speed up to soon replace the existing clunker cabs with new ones, otherwise, by the end of this year, the number will reach up to 192,000, he further lamented, adding, the number of old taxis will hit 243,000 by the end of Iranian calendar year 1400 (March 2021- March 2022).

Referring to the renovation scheme of 90,000 clunker taxis, he noted that since past three years, some 62,500 taxis have been renovated, which set the record high in fleet renovation history.

Through the scheme, we signed a contract with Iran Khodro car manufacturing company to receive some 10,000 cabs by the end of this year, while last year the car company did not fulfill its commitment and provided us with only 1,500 taxis, he explained.

Due to the unfavorable economic condition, we announced that taxi owners can to replace their old taxis with newer (second-hand) models instead, IRNA news agency quoted him as saying on Monday.

In past few years, we granted loans to the cab owners to purchase new ones, however, due to high prices of cars, they cannot afford it anymore.

He further concluded that we are trying to increase the loans to encourage owners to renovate their vehicles.

Mohammad Tarahhomi, an official with traffic police in January said that there are 1.5 million clunker vehicles and 9 million clunker motorcycles in Iran.

Deputy interior minister for urban and rural development, Mehdi Jamalinejad, said that some 22,000 busses are operating in the country’s public transport fleet, 16,000 of which are clunkers, accounting for 70 percent of the volume of bus transport system.

Ali Mohammadi, an official with traffic police, said in early January that the scrappage of clunker vehicles has decreased by 65 percent in the current Iranian calendar year (starting on March 21, 2018) compared to a year earlier. 

While last year some 140,000 vehicles were scrapped this year only 50,000 old vehicles were discarded, he added. 

Clunker cars, produce great deal of emission and cause air pollution especially in metropolises like Tehran. Tehraners have experienced a 17 days of excellent air quality since the beginning of the current Iranian calendar year (March 21, 2018).

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