Monday, July 04, 2011

From Tehran

In Tehran, it is hot and dry. The pollution could have been worse, still it manages to burn your throat. The streets are parking lots, it is impossible to find a spot to part your car. Driving is an adventure. The drivers stare at you and keep coming.... there is something psychological in that. They see you, but they do not see you.
The economy still is in transition, the new bills for public utility have sent shock waves through the economy. It is a guess but i do not think the households are done adjusting. The prices have gone up in some cases and are expected to increase even more by some. It is a bit traditional, in this economy consumers always expect price hikes.
Interesting observation: I have not seen any coffee shop or restaurant out of business, but it seems manufacturing sector is struggling (if one believes the word on the street).  There are the latest Mazda, Lexus and other brands on the streets. I have seen several Porsche as well in Tehran. The cars are so diverse from old Peykans, valued at a few thousand dollars, to imported vehicles with prices hovering in 200K USD and above. The drivers all drive the same! This is Tehran.