Azerbaijan, Baku, July 19/Trend M. Moezzi
Iran's government which has already turned over 17 of its 45 power plants to the private sector since 2008, will transfer 28 more plants with an estimated value of $11.4 billion (USD), by the end of this year (Iran's solar year ends on March 19).
Prices for 18 of the plants have been set and will be offered in the form of shares or assets, Bahman Allah-Moradi the administrator for the electricity industry's privatisation told Fars news Agency.
The value of 10 more stations is being evaluated and will be announced by the end of the summer.
Two of the power plants, Montazer Ghaem and Rajaei, are in Tehran. Meanwhile the ownership of one plant, Parand, will be transferred to the Iran Power Plant Projects Management Company (MAPNA) to settle the Energy Ministry's debts. Parand's value is estimated to be $407 million.
The Abadan, Sanandaj, Chabahar, Zagros, Soltanieh, Yazd, Kerman and Isfahan plants are among those earmarked for privatisation in the coming months.
Under Article 44 of the Iranian Constitution, regulating the country's economic and financial affairs, the economy is divided into three sectors: public, private and cooperative.
In 2004, the article was amended to allow the sale of 80 per cent of the state assets of large companies.
In 2007 when 70 per cent of industrial production was owned by the state, the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei ordered that government officials speed up implementation of the policies outlined in the amendment to Article 44, and move towards economic privatisation.
According to estimates by the head of the Privatisation Organisation of Iran, state assets worth $63 billion have been sold to the private sector from 2005 to 2010 (total value of state assets in Iran).