Raeisi Outlines Plans to Boost Employment

Raeisi Outlines Plans to Boost Employment
Raeisi Outlines Plans to Boost Employment

Presidential candidate Ebrahim Raeisi outlined his plans to curb unemployment, which he described as the fundamental cause of corruption and other social woes.

Speaking in an interview with state television on Sunday, Raeisi, one of the main challengers to the incumbent President Hassan Rouhani, pointed to the high rate of unemployment and pledged that if he wins the race, his administration will create one million jobs per year.

He noted that efficient management can help resolve economic problems provided people and their potentials are taken into account.

Raisi said his plans are aimed at promoting greenhouse farming, supporting the mining and industrial sectors, creating jobs and insurance coverage for homemakers, as well as overhauling the financial and banking systems.

Reacting to Rouhani's call for further engagement with other countries as the key to economic growth, Raeisi said Iran does not need foreign help to improve the economy.

"The approach that we should wait for foreign investment and for foreigners to resolve our issues is wrong," he said.

His words echoed the remarks of the Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei who has called on presidential candidates to promise not to rely on foreigners to revitalize the economy, if they win.

Instead, he has stressed the need to boost the domestic production sector and manufacturing industries to achieve self-reliance.

Rouhani has faced strong criticism from his conservative critics for failing to revive the economy even though international sanctions were removed under a diplomatic thaw with major powers, which he has touted as crucial to improving economic conditions.

Another candidate, the conservative Tehran Mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, has also criticized Rouhani's economic policy, saying "the gap between the poor and the rich has widened in the past four years".

Other candidates include Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri and former industries minister, Mostafa Hashemitaba who are backed by reformists, and Mostafa Mirsalim, former culture minister who represents the conservative camp.

They launched their campaigns on April 21, which will run until 24 hours before the election.

The presidential votes will be held on May 19 along with city council and midterm parliamentary polls.

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