EghtesadOnline: The share of iron products in Iran’s total non-oil exports increased noticeably, says the spokesman of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration.
“With the growth in production and export of iron products, including semi-finished product, all kinds of rods, ingots, iron or steel plates, a total of $4.5 billion were exported during the current fiscal year’s first eight months [March 21-Nov. 21] compared with last year’s corresponding period, to account for 14.5% of total exports worth $31 billion during the period,” Rouhollah Latifi was also quoted as saying by IRNA.
According to the official, 11.07 million tons worth $3.74 billion were exported in the fiscal 2020-21, of which 2.23 million tons worth $105.6 million constituted iron ore and related products, and 8.84 million tons worth $3.63 billion were iron and steel products.
He noted that iron ore only comprised 3% of the export value and the rest pertained to semis and finished products.
“Exports of iron products increased by more than $800 million compared with the total export’s value in the entire fiscal 2020-21. Notably, three iron products appeared in the list of Iran’s top 10 exported commodities during the period,” Latifi said.
A total of 1.61 million tons worth $1.15 billion of semi-finished iron products were exported during March 21-Nov. 21, registering a rise of 67% and 221% to account for 2.1% and 3.7% of total exports’ weight and value respectively.
Exports in the form of ingots stood at 1.76 million tons (up 44% YOY) worth $1.07 billion (up 149% YOY) to account for 2.1% of total weight and 3.4% of total value of exports of iron products.
Export of rods hit 1.26 million (up 62% YOY) worth $850 million (up 168% YOY) and accounted for 1.5% of the total weight and 2.7% of total value of exports.
The above-mentioned three categories were ranked fourth, sixth and 10th in the list of Iran’s top 10 export commodities during the period under review.
IMIDRO on Exports of Minerals, Mining Products
The IRICA data came after the Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization reported that a total of 31.08 million tons of minerals and mining products worth $7.06 billion were exported from Iran during the the current fiscal year’s first seven months (March 21-Oct. 22) to register a 9% and 105% year-on-year growth in weight and value respectively.
Steel and related products topped the list of exports in terms of value with $4.05 billion, followed by copper and related products with $967.35 million and aluminum and related products with $390.06 million.
In terms of tonnage, cement and related products topped the list with 12.39 million tons. Steel and related products came next with 6.13 million tons, followed by stone products with 2.48 million tons.
Exports of direct-reduced iron (DRI) saw the biggest jump in terms of value (287% YOY) to stand at $159.27 million, followed by aluminum and related products with $390.06 (up 270% YOY).
Exports of ferrosilicon manganese had the highest growth in terms of weight (217%) with 400 tons. Alumina powder and mica came next (up 207% YOY each) with 1,180 tons and 320 tons respectively and aluminum and related products (up 151% YOY) with 158,390 tons.
Imports of mineral and mining products stood at 2.31 million tons worth $1.96 million during the same period to register a 1% and 11% growth in weight and value respectively compared with the same period of last year.
Steel and related products also topped the list of imports in terms of value with $699.37 million, followed by coal and coke with $233.9 million, and ferromanganese with $136.24 million.
Coal and coke had the highest volume of imports in terms of weight with 707,080 tons. Steel and related products with 572,980 tons and alumina powder with 210,960 tons.
The value of ferromolybdenum imports saw the biggest jump (up 378% YOY) with $60,000. It was followed by lead with $1.68 million (up 242% YOY) and DRI with $60,000 (up 162% YOY).
Ferromolybdenum imports also had the highest growth in terms of weight (up 567% YOY) with 3,000 tons. It was followed by lead with 760,000 tons (up 533% YOY) and precious stones and metals (gold, silver and etc.) with 600 tons (up 158% YOY).
Iran’s export of mineral products stood at 55 million tons worth $7.6 billion in the last fiscal year (ended March 2021) to register a 21% and 11% year-on-year decline in total volume and value respectively.
According to IMIDRO, steel and related products topped the list of exports in terms of value with $4.1 billion and was followed by copper and related products with $958 million and cement and related products with $758 million.
In terms of tonnage, cement had the largest share with 24.3 million tons, followed by steel and related products with 9.69 million tons.
Alumina powder exports saw the biggest jump in terms of value (335% YOY) to reach $1.8 million, followed by aluminum and related products with $321 million (up 177% YOY).
Imports stood at 4.15 million tons worth $3.4 billion in the fiscal 2020-21, indicating a 13% increase in tonnage and a 6% growth in value compared with the year before.
Steel and related products also topped the list of mineral imports in terms of value with $1.3 billion, followed by coal and coke with $300 million. Aluminum and related products with $290 million came next.
The import value of steel and related products saw the biggest jump (39% YOY) to $1.37 million.
Mineral Diversity, Reserves
Iran is home to 81 types of minerals with reserves totaling 37-40 billion tons, according to Alireza Shahidi, the head of Geological Survey and Mineral Exploration of Iran.
“Construction materials, including gravel, rubble stones, sand and different types of stones, account for 62% of Iran’s mineral reserves, metal minerals constitute 10-15% of total reserves and the rest are non-metallic minerals,” he said.
“Gold reserves are increasing on a daily basis. Recently, new mines have been identified in South Khorasan Province, the reserves of which should hopefully increase the country’s mineral wealth to 100 billion tons.”
Shahidi noted that up until 2015, the level of exploration and investment were in tandem, now a wide gap has opened up between the two, suggesting that the costs of exploration are on the rise, IRNA reported.
He added that a total of 945,000 kilometers of land in Iran underwent exploration operations in the 2000s.
“The country’s mines are mostly close to the surface; [the exploitation of] hidden mineral reserves in the depths of the earth need to increase,” he said.
According to the United States Geological Survey, Iran holds the world's largest zinc, ninth largest copper, 10th largest iron ore, fifth largest gypsum and barite, and 10th largest uranium reserves.
Overall, Iran is home to more than 7% of global mineral reserves.