Iran’s mineral reserves up 3 billion tons
Azerbaijan, Baku, Nov.28 / Trend F.Milad/
Explorations during the first half of the current Iranian calendar year indicate that the country's proven, probable mineral reserves have been increased by 1.65 billion tons and 1.4 billion tons respectively, an official with the Ministry of Industry, Mine and Trade stated.
Reza Azimi told the ISNA news agency that the explorations were carried out over 100,000 square kilometres area across the country, but did not refer to the country's volume of mineral reserves.
Deputy Head of Iran's Geology and Mineral Exploration Organisation Behrouz Borna has said that the country ranks first in the Middle East for possessing the region's largest mineral reserves.
"Iran holds three per cent of the world's mineral reserves, which puts the country first in the Middle East and third in Asia," Mr Borna added, Press TV reported.
The official also said that the country holds about 68 kinds of minerals. He added that 20 other types of minerals have been identified through recent explorations.
Iran is ranked among the 15 major mineral-rich countries of the world and exports its industrial and mineral products to 159 countries, including Iraq, China, the United Arab Emirates, India and Afghanistan.
The important mines of Iran include coal, metallic minerals, sand and gravel, chemical minerals and salt. Iran has the world's largest zinc and second largest copper deposits and ranks ninth for its iron reserves.