EghtesadOnline: The Amin al-Zarb Awards ceremony was held on Tuesday in a ceremony attended by entrepreneurs, business owners and government officials.
Marking the fifth such ceremony, the event is organized annually by Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture.
The Amin al-Zarb Badge (named after a merchant and philanthropist who founded TCCIM 137 years ago) is given to leading entrepreneurs and thinkers in recognition of their contribution to the economy, TCCIM's website reported.
The event, hosted by TCCIM at Tehran's Vahdat Hall, honors lifetime achievements in manufacturing and entrepreneurship, and recognizes individuals whose roles have made a difference and contributed to economic progress.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the ceremony was attended by a smaller number of entrepreneurs, economists and officials compared with the previous events.
First Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri, Tehran Mayor Pirouz Hanachi and Masoud Khansari, the head of TCCIM, who inaugurated the event, were keynote speakers of the event.
Khansari named some of the well-known Iranian entrepreneurs in the past half century. However, criticism of the government’s various economic policies was the catchphrase of his speech.
The TCCIM official blamed "mistaken government policies" for rampant corruption in the country. Exemplifying some of the widely censured policies, he pointed to "issuing consecutive, [and at times contradictory] bylaws, extending cheap currency [for import], granting untargeted subsidies, undermining the principle of competition in economy", among other things.
Jahangir and Hanachi spoke briefly at the ceremony. The former pledged that "economic difficulties arising from sanctions will end soon". He also commended TCCIM's initiative to honor entrepreneurs.
Amin al-Zarb Award was granted to nine recipients. Seven of them were well-known entrepreneurs and founders of key businesses in Iran.
The Amin al-Zarb badges were given to Akbar Lajevardian, a veteran industry figure and founder of Behshahr Industrial Company, a leading producer of edible oils.
Reza Tehranchi was the next recipient honored for lifelong economic activity and entrepreneurship. He founded Vitana Company, a well-known biscuit-maker in Iran.
The reward also was given to Gholmreza Zolanwari, a veteran entrepreneur active in Iran’s carpet industry, Jamshid Bordbar, a prominent figure in electricity industry, and Mohammad Ahramian, the founder of Yazd Steel Industries Industry.
Reza Hamidi and Mohammad Reza Ansari were also among entrepreneurs who received the rewards.
Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh, the former industries minister, was also honored for "a lifelong presence in the industrial sector". Fereidoun Shirinkam, a prolific author, was the next award winner. He has written many books about the life and times of entrepreneurs.
The prize is named after Mohammad Hassan Isfahani (well known as Amin al-Zarb or treasurer), an immensely influential Iranian businessman who was a pioneer in conducting trade with other nations and has many accomplishments to his name.
His son, Mohammad Hossein Amin al-Zarb, followed his father’s example and is known as a pioneer in bringing electricity to Iran.
He founded the Assembly of Merchants in 1926, which later morphed into Tehran Chamber of Commerce. He was the director of the influential chamber since its establishment and up to his death in 1932.