By Faranak Bakhtiari

Biotechnology budget rises almost 50%

January 6, 2021 - 17:8

TEHRAN – The national budget bill for the next Iranian calendar year (starting on March 20) has proposed 4 trillion rials (around $95 million at the official rate of 42,000 rials) for biotechnology, a 47.8 percent increase compared to the current year’s budget.

About 62 percent of the biotechnology credits are earmarked to the Ministry of Agriculture and its subdivisions.

The Ministry of Science, Research, and Technology also has three executive bodies related to the biotechnology sector, which holds a 20 percent share of the total budget.

The Biotechnology Development Headquarters is also affiliated with the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology which has been allocated 17 percent of the funds.

From an institutional point of view, 26 percent of the total biotechnology budget belongs to the Agricultural Research, Education, and Extension Organization.

Credits proposed in the next year’s budget bill have increased compared to the current year for all major organizations.

The government submitted the draft of the national budget bill for the next [Iranian calendar] year to Majlis on December 2, 2020.

The proposed budget amounted to about 24.357 quadrillion rials (about $580 billion), with a 20-percent rise from the current year’s budget.

Supplying basic goods, treatment, and medical equipment; securing livelihood; supporting production and employment; promoting and supporting non-oil exports and knowledge-based companies are the focal points of the bill.

Environment’s share of national budget

The bill has proposed 12 trillion rials (around $292 million) for the Department of Environment, a nearly twofold increase compared to the current year’s budget of 6.38 trillion rials (nearly $151 million).

The DOE’s budget will be spent on air pollution management, sustainable conservation, and exploitation of aquatic ecosystems, conservation, restoration and refinement of onshore biodiversity, conservation of protected areas, protection of rangers, wildfire prevention, and promotion of public participation and awareness in environmental protection.

To support the rangers, about 1.08 trillion rials (about $25 million) is proposed, while this figure for the current year’s budget has been about 290 billion rials (about $6.9 million), showing a threefold increase, according to IRNA.

A total of 1.4 billion trillion rials (around $34 million) to provide equipment for the protection and firefighting unit of the areas under the management of the DOE, which is raised by 98 percent compared to the previous.

The budget for the promotion of public participation, awareness, and culture is about 1.4 billion trillion rials (around $34 million), which was increased by 42 percent in comparison to that the last year.

The share of waste management supervision is set at 300 billion rials (around $7 million).

More than 3.2 trillion rials (about $77 million) are to be allocated for the monitoring and management of pollutants.

A sum of 8.5 billion rials (nearly $202,000) is also proposed for the implementation of the Clean Air Law.

FB/MG

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