Tehran, Iran, June 6
By Kamyar Eghbalnejad - Trend:
Deputy Minister of Industry, Mining and Trade Mehdi Karbasian said a consortium of Iranian and Russian companies is expected to jointly invest in Iran’s mining sector.
“Two Russian firms have come to Iran and started negotiations. A consortium led by Iranian and Russian firms will cooperate with Iranian companies and jointly invest in mines located in the cities of Gol Gohar, Mes-e Sarcheshme, and Chadormalu,” Karbasian said recently, according to ISNA news agency.
The Russian firms will soon present the details of their proposals, he added, noting that they are expected to allocate a credit line of $1 billion for the exploration of the Iranian mines.
The consortium has plans to identify new mines and mineral reserves, the Iranian deputy minister further said.
“No deal has yet been reached between the two sides,” Karbasian said.
The Russians sat down with Iranian Mines & Mining Industries Development & Renovation, known as IMIDRO, the Iranian official said, adding that the state-owned holding company will take all necessary measures to strike a deal.
On May 27, a Russian metallurgical company based in Verkhnyaya Pyshma, the second largest copper producer in Russia, expressed willingness to cooperate with Iran in the country's mining sector.
“We can cooperate with Iran in various fields by having access to Iran’s projects,” Sergo-Shakhzada Kurbanov, an official with UMMC (Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company), said during a meeting with Karbasian in Tehran.
Iran’s mining sector has staged an underwhelming performance and accounts for only 5-7 percent of Iran’s GDP. This is while mineral trade volume and value have been continuously on the rise for the past two years, accounting for close to 30 percent of Iran’s total non-oil trade.
Mining companies account for 15-20 percent of the total 4.1-quadrillion-rial ($102.54 billion) value of Iran’s stock market, according to reports.
Iran is home to 68 types of minerals with more than 37 billion tons of proven reserves and 57 billion tons of potential reserves.