The president of the restaurateurs association of Mashhad has said that 255 restaurants in the north-eastern Iranian city, out of a total of 1,200, closed their doors last year due to ballooning inflation and a drop in people’s purchasing power.
“If the government gives us meat and chicken at low prices, then we can offer meals to our customers at low prices as well,” Hassan Amirian said on May 13.
The price for a kilogram of meat has jumped from 200,000 to 400,000 tomans over the past five months, Amirian pointed out, asking, "What were the members of the association supposed to do?”
In the meantime, the rents for the restaurants have increased by 40 percent, he added.
Inflation has soared to over 50 percent, the highest level in decades.
While a growing number of restaurants and recreational establishments in Iran are going bankrupt, the authorities have closed down hundreds of restaurants, shops and tourist sites in the past few months due to the failure of owners or managers to observe mandatory headscarf rules.
A growing number of Iranian women have appeared in public without the compulsory head covering since Mahsa Amini's death in the custody of morality police in September last year.
All women in Iran must conceal their hair with a hijab and wear loose fitting trousers under their coats while in public.