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May 1 (Bloomberg) -- The Iranian government asked for $2 billion in basic commodities to be stocked up ahead of subsidy reforms in the Persian Gulf nation, Mehr reported, citing officials.

Iranian Vice-President Mohammad Reza Rahimi said $2 billion was allocated for the stocking up of “essential” goods, the state-run news agency said in a report on its website today.

Iran’s Industries, Mines and Commerce Ministry received an order to start stocking up essential and sensitive items, an unidentified ministry official had earlier told Mehr, according to the report. Rice, cooking oil, sugar, red meat, chicken meat and corn are among the commodities listed, the person said.

The move is aimed at regulating the market as the government looks at proceeding with reforms it started in December 2010 to phase out subsidies on food and energy.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ladane Nasseri in Dubai at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at

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