Jul 20 2018

Istanbul-Tehran flight cancelled due to foreign exchange crisis

A flight to Istanbul from Tehran was cancelled as a result of a crisis at the airport where Iranian nationals could not buy foreign exchange at the official rate, Turkish news site Artı Gerçek reported on Friday.

The Rouhani government pegged the value of the Iranian rial against the dollar in April and prohibited foreign exchange transactions at the free market. The government also allowed Iranian nationals going abroad to buy foreign exchange once a year at a lower rate than the market price. 

Iranians are only allowed the buy foreign exchange at the airports, a few hours before their flight.  However, as the market rate for foreign exchange doubled the official rate, Iran’s Central Bank suspended foreign exchange sales at airports, which led to the cancellation of flights. 

Iranians waited in long queues to buy dollars and the police had to intervene as tensions rose inside Tehran airport, Artı Gerçek said.