EghtesadOnline: Major Iranian copper producers extracted about 120 million tons of copper ores during the first eight months of the current fiscal year (March 21-Nov. 21), which indicates a 7% growth compared with last year's corresponding period.
Sarcheshmeh Copper Complex accounted for 61.37 million tons of the total figure, up 10% year-on-year. It was followed by Sungun complex with 36.06 million tons and Miduk Complex with 21.62 million tons, data released by Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization showed.
Copper extraction during the eighth Iranian month (Oct. 23-Nov. 21) amounted to 13.39 million tons, down 8% YOY.
Copper sulfide extraction during the eight months stood at 36 million tons to register a 5% increase YOY. Sarcheshmeh Copper Complex had a share of 19.93 million tons from the total figure, up 5% YOY, followed by Sungun complex with 10.2 million, up 7% YOY, and Miduk Complex with 5.86 million tons, up 2% YOY, according to Financial Tribune.
Copper sulfide extraction during the eighth month topped 4 million tons to register a 16% decline compared with last year’s same month.
Copper concentrate output during the period under review stood at 792,352 tons, witnessing an increase of 6% YOY. Again, Sarcheshmeh had the lion’s share with 467,193 tons, up 7% YOY, followed by Sungun with 221,769 tons, up 6% YOY and Miduk with 103,390 tons up 2% YOY.
Production in the eighth month was 93,243 tons, down 10% YOY, while it reached 93,241, down 10% YOY, in last year’s same month.
Sarcheshmeh Copper Complex and Khatoon Abad Copper Refinery produced an aggregate of 202,501 tons of copper anode during the eight months, up 88% YOY. Sarcheshmeh had the bigger share with 130,064 tons, up 232% YOY, and Khatoon Abad produced 72,437 tons, up by 6% YOY.
Copper anode production during the eighth month stood at 27,730 tons, up 64% YOY.
Sarcheshmeh Copper Complex and Miduk Complex produced 158,454 tons of copper cathode from March 21 to Nov. 21, up by 79% YOY. Again, Sarcheshmeh had the highest share with 97,742 tons, as Miduk produced 60,712 tons.
Copper cathode output during the eighth month reached 21,474 tons, going up by 99% YOY.
A total of 4,679 tons of molybdenum were produced by Sarcheshmeh and Sungun (3,145 and 1,534 tons respectively), which indicated a 15% decrease compared with last year's corresponding period.
Sarcheshmeh Copper Complex is planning to boost its copper concentrate output capacity from the current 600,000 tons to over 1 million tons by 2022.
Established in 1972, the complex operates the open cast copper mine in Kerman Province, which is considered the second largest copper deposit worldwide. The mine was first established by the American Anaconda Group until the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, which led to the nationalization of assets and establishment of National Iranian Copper Industries Company.
NICICO is now the leading copper producer in the Middle East and North Africa region, as it holds close to 14% of Asia’s copper deposits and about 3% of global reserves. The company operates several other copper mines in the country.