December 16, 2021
The MP for Ahvaz, Karim Hosseini, has told ISNA news agency that unemployment is the root cause of societal, security and economic hardship in Khuzestan province. Locals should be given the priority when new jobs are created in the region, he said.
Unemployment in Khuzestan officially stood at 13 percent in 2020, almost 1.5 times the national average. However this figure does not take into account “economically inactive” adults who have left the job market due, for example, to illness or becoming carers. The majority of higher-level jobs in Khuzestan’s petrochemical industry have gone to people from outside the province.
“Hiring from the native workforce is the solution to the unemployment problem in the province,” Hosseini said. He went on to demand that CEOs and company board members in Khuzestan also be locals, so as to prevent the over-enlistment of outsiders. MPs, he said, were blocking this from becoming a legal requirement.
In recent days, citizens in Behbahan have staged multiple rallies to protest against the recruitment of non-locals at the Bid Boland gas refinery in the Persian Gulf. The gatherings were violently dispersed by security forces.