Public Warned Over Unauthorized Leasing Firms
Years have elapsed since leasing firms got a foothold in Iran. Statistics indicate that around 600 companies under different names are operating in Tehran and all around the country while the supervision umbrella of the Central Bank of Iran is extended to only 32 of them. The rest are freely digging profit without being held accountable to any authorities.
According to Banker news website, the irregularities created by the operations of unsupervised firms have also adversely affected the work of authorized ones leading to the constant objections, including the recent criticisms by Hamid Shirvani, chairman of leasing companies association in Iran.
Shirvani believes the authorized leasing firms are usually affiliated to the banks or auto makers and have not faced major issues so far; however, they have been greatly affected by their unsupervised rivals.
“The unauthorized firms neither pay tax nor report to the central bank and supervisory authorities,” Shirvani explained, adding that some unauthorized firms have even made trouble for the public.
Though there is no precise statistics available on the number of unauthorized leasing firms, Shirvani said they were about 320 in 2005. “Today, the number is certainly much higher,” he added, warning people to be careful when approaching the leasing firms.
He also called on the central bank and law enforcement bodies to address the issue by providing the public with accurate information on the firms.
Earlier, central bank officials announced that 7,000 unauthorized credit institutions operate across the country of which over 500 are estimated to be leasing firms.
The central bank is determined to crack down on unauthorized financial institutions. Hamid Tehranfar, the deputy central bank governor for banking supervision, has recently said, “the central bank has paved the way for bureaux de change, cooperatives, funds and leasing firms to legalize their status and it is their own fault if they fail to take timely action.”