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Iran designates 12.3 mln bank accounts as business-related

File photo shows customers and staff at a bank branch in Iran.

The Central Bank of Iran (CBI) has identified some 12.3 million bank accounts held by individuals and companies in the country as having links to businesses amid its efforts to prevent tax evasion and money laundering.

CBI’s head of software engineering department said on Saturday that some 10 million bank accounts held by individuals and another 2.3 million held by legal entities had been designated as business-related since January when the Iranian government launched a plan to distinguish between business and non-business bank accounts.

Hassan Mirzapour said Iran’s tax administration is responsible for analyzing turnovers and transactions of a bank account before flagging it as a business account.

Mirzapour said that the CBI then orders private and state banks to designate the bank accounts as business-related and apply new regulations to the accounts.

He said business bank accounts will enjoy privileges in the new banking laws, including discounts and lower restrictions on withdrawals and transfers.

The official said some 15 banks in Iran have yet to join the scheme to identify and report their business-related accounts.

Iran says new laws on bank accounts are meant to prevent tax evasion and money laundering in the country. Under the new system, non-business accounts held by an individuals in various banks will be designated as business accounts if deposit transactions of the accounts exceed a certain cap within a month.

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