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The ban on luxury cars was introduced to stop foreign exchange from exiting the country, reduce fuel consumption and help tackle the air pollution crisis.
The ban on luxury cars was introduced to stop foreign exchange from exiting the country, reduce fuel consumption and help tackle the air pollution crisis.

Pundits Weigh In on Luxury Car Ban

Pundits Weigh In on Luxury Car Ban

A court last week gave the go-ahead for the import of cars with engines larger than 2.5 liters held up at the customs on the grounds that they had entered the country before the government had passed the new ruling.  
Officials noted that despite this ruling, the ban on car imports is still in place.
The ban on luxury cars was introduced to stop foreign exchange from exiting the country, reduce fuel consumption and help tackle the air pollution crisis.  
Farbod Zaveh, an automotive expert, believes that the measures taken by the government, though correct, is incomplete.
According to Zaveh, all cars that have engines larger than 2.5 liters are placed in the luxury class and the government's measure is correct in that sense.
However, the drawback to this, he says, is that there are several cars with smaller engines that also fall in the category of luxury cars but are unaffected by the government ruling that only factors in the size of the engine.  
"As an example, most BMW models, including the i8, and several Porsches that are imported to Iran are in the luxury class, but they make their way to the country as they have engines smaller than 2.5 liters," he said.
The expert, however, noted that the government ruling has been effective, as it has noticeably limited the import of luxury cars.
Shahram Azadi, another automotive pundit, believes that the ban is incorrect and importers of such cars should instead be forced to pay hefty taxes.
He believes that Iran should follow the example of other countries where imports of all types of cars are permitted, but more expensive cars that consume more fuel are taxed higher than other models.
"By taxing luxury cars three times more than other models, the government can raise revenues and the money can be used in other areas," he said.
Azadi added that the decision made by Iran’s Administrative Court of Justice in this regard was a correct move as "none of the laws in this regard should be retrospective".  
Farhad Ehteshamzad, the head of Iran's Auto Importers Association, believes that irrespective of the fact that the import of luxury cars should be banned or not, "the engine size is not an appropriate factor for classifying a car as luxurious".

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