Tehran, Covid-19: 850 thousand jobs lost, but schools reopen

62% of the companies that have closed belong to the service sector. 28% refer to industry and 20% to agriculture. About 13,500 people have retired in recent months. Rouhani allocates three billion for healthcare. Over the weekend the first bell rang for 15 million pupils in 116,000 schools.

Tehran (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Up to 850,000 people in Iran have lost their jobs since the start of the new coronavirus pandemic last March.

Masoud Babaei, an official at the Ministry for Labor, Cooperatives and Welfare, reports that the data is relevant to August 1 and the situation could have worsened in the last month. Since the detection of the first case, many companies and businesses have had to close their doors: 62% of these belong to the service sector, which employs the majority of the workforce.

Of just under a million lost jobs, 59% are in the tertiary sector and 28% are in industry, where the Covid-19 emergency has brought 31% of companies to their knees. The data reveals that the agricultural sector is among those that have held up best in the face of the pandemic, with 20% of the companies affected and 3% of the occupants who have lost their jobs.

About 13,500 people have retired in recent months and many more could follow the same path in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, the government has allocated 24 billion dollars to help workers and businesses in difficulty, containing the impact of the virus on the economy. President Hassan Rouhani reports the allocation of three billion for health, 1.2 for the unemployment support fund and another 1.9 billion in cash for low-income families.

The number of cases in Iran reached 388,810, with 22,410 victims. In the last 24 hours there have been 2,152 infections, 117 victims and just over 3,700 people in critical conditions.

In a context that remains difficult, amid strict health measures to protect the health of pupils and their teachers, school for 15 million students across the country began on 5 September. The first - symbolic - bell was sounded by Iranian President Rouhani in a high school for women in central Tehran.

School usually starts on September 23, a date that traditionally marks the beginning of the autumn season according to the Iranian calendar, after the three months of summer holidays. However, this year, in light of the pandemic and its effects on schools and society, the ministry has ordered an early start for the millions of pupils scattered in 116 thousand schools.