We're always looking for ways to make better. Have an idea? See something that needs fixing? Let us know!


Between 1960 and 1979, Iran’s roads and highways increased from 42,000 kilometers to 63,000 kilometers. During the Iran– Iraq War, roadways were expanded to 100,000 kilometers, and by 2003 the system had expanded to 179,990 kilometers, 100,000 of which were paved. Some 36 percent of Iran’s roads are classified as main roads (highways and freeways). In 2004 public roads carried approximately 348 million tons of freight and the equivalent of 404 million people. Some 281,000 transport vehicles (76 percent trucks, 6 percent buses) moved cargo and passengers. There were 2,647 transportation enterprises, 139 of which were international companies and 1,093, cooperatives.

Since 1989, road construction has stressed ring roads around large cities and multilane highways between major metropolitan areas. The three national autoroutes are the A–1 across northern Iran, from the Turkish border on the west to the Afghan border on the east, and connecting Tabriz, Tehran, and Mashhad; the A–2 across southern Iran, from the Iraqi border in the west to the Pakistani border in the east; and the Tehran–Qom–Esfahan–Shiraz highway, which traverses central Iran from north to south.

Road expansion after the Revolution had spillover benefits to rural development, industry, and commerce, but it also facilitated rural-urban migration, particularly to Tehran and other major cities. Expanded use of motor vehicles and the lack of public transportation systems have contributed to increased air and noise pollution since the mid-1960s. Stimulated by government subsidization of gasoline prices, the number of registered motor vehicles increased nineteenfold between 1986 and 2004. In 2004 the number of registered motor vehicles was 1,926,449, including 634,482 passenger cars. In 2006 about three-quarters of domestic freight moved by truck.

Data as of 2008

Last Updated: January 2008

Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Iran was first published in 1987. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on

Iran Main Page Country Studies Main Page

Section 136 of 246


Click any image to enlarge.

National Flag

(﷼) Iran Rial (IRR)
Convert to Any Currency


Locator Map