Iran to support businesses migrating to domestic internet platforms
Iran will offer financial support to businesses who decide to use domestic internet platforms after restrictions were imposed on foreign social media services last month.
The restrictions were imposed after the flare-up of violence in various cities across the country.
Iran’s telecoms minister Issa Zarepour said on Saturday that the government is considering a package of financial incentives for businesses migrating to domestic internet platforms.
Zarepour said the support will include tax exemptions and cheap loans that will be assigned to businesses identified by Iranian ministries of telecommunications and finance.
The announcement comes nearly three weeks after Iran blocked access to Instagram and WhatsApp, two social media platforms owned by American company Meta Platforms.
The decision came after a bout of deadly violence on the Iranian streets that authorities blamed on rioters and thugs that had capitalized on public anger about the death on September 16 of a young women in police custody.
Zarepour said Iran had no plan to block Instagram before the unrest but he insisted that relevant authorities decided to impose restrictions on the platform after it failed to comply with Iran’s laws and regulations.
Estimates indicate some 10 million Iranian businesses were active on Instagram before the platform was banned last month.
A recent report by Iran’s Etemad daily showed that business activity on the platform had created some four million jobs, including one million direct jobs, in Iran before the unrest began.
The report added the annual turnover of small Iranian
businesses on Instagram was believed to be between $600 million and $1