EghtesadOnline: The National Iranian Copper Industries Company sold 117.51 trillion rials ($1 billion) worth of products during the seven months to Oct. 22 to register a staggering rise of 144% compared with last year’s corresponding period.
According to the company’s managing director, Ardeshir Sa'd-Mohammadi, NICICO’s sales during the seventh Iranian month (Sept. 23-Oct. 22) amounted to 17.23 trillion rials ($154.52 million), up by 259% year-on-year, ISNA reported.
NICICO is a leading copper producer in the Middle East and North Africa region and its mines hold close to 14% of Asia’s copper deposits and about 3% of global reserves, according to Financial Tribune.
Iran holds about 4 billion tons of estimated copper reserves, the Geological Survey of Iran declared.
A total of 56,000 tons of copper were exported from Iran during the first six months of the current Iranian year (March 21-Sept. 22), according to Ardeshir Sa'd-Mohammadi.
H1 exports exceeded the total volume of shipments in the last Iranian year (March 2018-19), which amounted to 47,000 tons.
According to the official, Iran’s copper output stood at 132,400 tons during the six-month period.
"Iran’s copper production is expected to exceed 260,000 tons by the fiscal yearend [March 19, 2019] and will exceed 300,000 tons next year [March 2020-21]," he was quoted as saying by IRNA.
The official noted that Iran's copper smelting capacity is expected to reach 400,000 tons—double the current capacity—by the end of the current fiscal year (March 2020).
Taking into account the development of copper mines of Der Alo Copper Mine, Darezar Copper Mine and Khatunabad (all three in Kerman Province) as well as new explorations, Sa'd-Mohammadi believes the country’s copper reserves will last for the next 100 years at least.
On July 03, 1972, Kerman Sarcheshmeh Copper Mines Co. was incorporated and in 1976 it was renamed National Iranian Copper Industries Company, which encompasses all operations of copper mines in the country. Its functions include: To extract and operate copper mines; to produce high grade products of ore and copper products such as cathode, slab, billet and 8-mm wires.
The most important copper mines of the country include Sarcheshmeh and Miduk in Kerman and Songon in East Azarbaijan.
National Iranian Copper Industries Company and its subsidiaries, including Sungun Complex, Miduk Complex and Sarcheshmeh Copper Complex, produced an aggregate of 589,669 tons of copper concentrate during the first six months of the current Iranian year (March 21-Sept. 22) to register a decrease of 1% compared with last year’s similar period.
Production in the month ending Sept. 22 stood at 106,876 tons–unchanged year-on-year, the Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization’s latest report shows.
NICICO produced a total of 132,421 tons of copper cathode during the period, up by 15% YOY.
Copper cathode output during the sixth month reached 22,033 tons, up by 5% YOY.
A total of 3,973 tons of molybdenum were produced by NICICO during the six-month period, which indicates a 13% increase YOY.
Molybdenum output during the month to Sept. 22 totaled 706 tons, up by 10% YOY.
According to the United States Geological Survey, Iran holds the world's ninth largest copper reserves.
Exports of copper and downstream products in the last Iranian year (ended March 20) stood at 365,070 tons worth about $917.53 million, down by 52% in tonnage and up by 13% in value YOY.
Copper and downstream products’ imports stood at 1,870 tons worth $17.42 million, indicating a 93.3% and 90.7% decline in tonnage and value respectively YOY.
Copper and downstream products were the third major mineral commodity on the list of the country’s mineral trade.