EghtesadOnline: Pars Chrome Khazar Factory, located in Miandorud County of Mazandaran Province, has come on stream after being closed for about four years, the managing director and investor of the factory told IRNA on Monday.
Ali Akbari Nozari added that the factory has been reopened with an investment of 20 billion rials ($154,440) by the private sector.
Pars Chrome Khazar produces basic chromic sulfate—a raw material needed in leather production. It was shut down in the fiscal 2016-17 due to financial problems.
Also known as chromium (III) sulfate basic, the dark green powder dissolves easily in water and is mainly used in the tanning of leathers and furs, Financial Tribune reported.
According to Nozari, the factory’s production capacity is around 200 tons per month and with the reopening of the factory, domestic demand for raw materials needed for leather production, which was previously imported from China, Russia, Turkey and Singapore, can be met domestically.
About 80 people are now working in the factory after its reopening.
Pars Chrome Khazar Factory is said to be the only producer of basic chromic sulfate in the Middle East.
Ninety percent of hides produced in Iran are exported in raw form, also known as ‘salambor’.
According to Chairman of Iran Tanners Association Ali Hassanzadeh, the export of 15 million sheepskin is worth $40 million, while the value grows to $200-210 million by processing the salambor into leather, and further to $700-800 by producing leatherware.
The export of salambor in the raw form comes amid shortage of chemicals needed to process the hide and lack of up-to-date machinery.
As a result, many production units are operating under capacity.
According to an IRIB News report, the production of 1,000 sheepskin creates seven jobs. If this volume is turned into leather, it can create 35-37 jobs. As many as 200 jobs are created by making leather garments.
“Iran has a share of up to 5% in global sheepskin exports,” Hassanzadeh said, adding that the country has a 1% share in global cowhide exports.
He says Iran has an output of 22 million cowhide, 18 million sheepskin and 7 million goatskin per year.
“Of the 18 million sheepskins, which are turned into salambor and then exported, the country earns $45 million [per year],” Hassanzadeh was quoted as saying by Mehr News Agency.
Tehran, Tabriz and Mashhad are the top cowhide production hubs in Iran.