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World Bank, Washington, DC
Middle East and North Africa | Iran, Islamic Republic of
2021-03-04T14:03:33Z | 2021-03-04T14:03:33Z | 2021-03

This paper simulates the welfare and poverty impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Islamic Republic of Iran, emphasizing the role of inflation, which lowered the purchasing power of households and had heterogeneous impacts across the distribution and in different regions of the country. First, income losses are estimated with a microsimulation analysis based on shock scenarios. Second, combining data on price changes with expenditure baskets for various groups of households, group-specific price indices are calculated. These are then applied to the post-shock income changes to assess the deterioration of living standards associated with inflation. Poverty substantially increases, by up to 21 percentage points, as a combined result of the fall in household incomes and high inflation through the pandemic. Iranians in the bottom half of the welfare distribution, those working in services and high-contact economic sectors, and those in rural areas are disproportionately affected.


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