The report published by official IRNA news agency on Wednesday estimated that plans for redenomination of Iran’s rial by slashing four zeros from the currency and renaming it to toman would cost the government some 19.16 trillion rials ($159.7 million), Presstv Reported.
The projections were based on estimates about the total number of banknotes currently in circulation in the Iranian economy which the IRNA said was about 8.8 billion, including the legal tenders issued and stamped by the banks to facilitate transactions.
The report said the government would have to spend 2,240 rials ($0.018) for annihilation and replacement of each current banknote.
The government announced its plan for overhaul of the rial last month, more than a year after the currency hit historic lows against major international currencies and following US decision to re-impose a series of economic sanctions on Iran.
The plan has sparked a real controversy in the economic circles inside Iran as some believe it would further deepen the current economic woes of the government by causing more inflation and creating unnecessary administrative expenditure.
Others have supported the scheme, saying it would simplify transactions and would help the government save more by stopping to issue billions of devalued notes and coins each year.
The IRNA report estimated that the rial overhaul plan would save the government some $11.5 million each year.
Based on the scheme, which should be ratified by the Iranian parliament before coming into effect, Iran’s new currency toman, equal to 100 new rials, will be worth 10,000 old rials.