Economy, Business And Markets

IMIDRO Ahead of Exploration Plan

IMIDRO Ahead of Exploration Plan IMIDRO Ahead of Exploration Plan

The Iranian Mining and Mines Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO) has explored 188,000 square kilometers of the country’s area during the 11 months of the current Iranian calendar year, (to end March 20), IRNA quoted IMIDRO as reporting.

This is while the organization had planned explort 200,000 square kilometers over three years based on a memorandum of understanding (MoU) it signed with the ministry of Industry, mine and trade, and the Geological Survey of Iran in December 2013.

According to the MoU, the Sangan region in Khorasan Razavi Province was chosen for exploration to discover new iron ore reserves – urgently required by the country to archive the goals set in the 2025 Vision Plan, which aims at producing at least 55 million metric tons of crude steel annually by the next ten years.

The exploration progress is even more significant considering that only 11,500 square kilometers were explored during the previous Iranian year (March 21, 2013- March 20, 2014). Exploration operations, for which a 1.2 trillion-rial ($43 million at official exchange rate) budget has been allocated, began in Sangan region in northeastern Iran, and gradually expanded towards the southeastern province of Sistan & Baluchestan. According to officials, explorations will be progress towards the central, southern, western, and northwestern regions in the near future.

Exploration has always been described as one of the major deficiencies in Iran’s mining sector. Domestic producers have faced serious shortage of raw material over the past decade, especially in light of the emphasis by the governments on increasing production of mineral products such as steel.

As a solution, officials suggest developing exploration operations to find new mineral resources, while at the same time imposing restrictions on the export of raw minerals, in a bid to encourage the mining sector to process the extracted minerals and increase the value added in the sector. Iran is estimated to have more than 60 billion tons of mineral reserves, 40 billion tons of which are proven.