Economy, Business And Markets

President Inaugurates Biggest Glass Manufacturer

President Inaugurates Biggest Glass ManufacturerPresident Inaugurates Biggest Glass Manufacturer

The country's biggest glass production line was inaugurated by President Hassan Rouhani in the northwestern industrial city of Tabriz on Thursday, IRNA reported.

The Sahand Industrial Group is capable of annually producing 220,000 metric tons of different products including building glass, car glass, mirrors, safety glass, and decorative glass, accounting for 25% of the domestic consumption.

The company, located 20 kilometers from Tabriz, has been built through a 1.25-trilion-rial investment which equals $37.6 million based on the market exchange rate. The daily production capacity for the company is said to be 600 tons while as many as 600 people have already been employed in the new production line.

The president praised the private sector’s attempts in helping boost the economy. “The company manufactures products that rival those manufactured in developed countries both in terms of quality and price”, he noted, calling on all private sector manufacturers and industrial companies to produce quality Iranian products “worthy of the country’s rightful status.”

The new production line will also produce low emissivity (low-e) glass, as a measure to promote the national construction regulations which require the utilization of double-pane windows or glass with low-e. The low-e glass is manufactured with metal-oxide coatings as well as house wrap materials, reflective thermal insulations and other forms of radiant thermal barriers. Certain properties such as the iron content may be controlled, changing the thermal emissivity properties of glass.

Despite having roots in Iran’s history, the glass industry has not been given the attention it deserves until now. The country has huge reserves of raw material to produce glass including sand, soda ash, dolomite and limestone but its share in the global trade for glass is meager. The investments for scientific production of the material have always been made sporadically and it is generally manufactured through traditional methods.

Although a number of large industrial factories have been established to produce glass during the past 15 years, domestic demand for modern glass is ever growing. However, according to glass manufacturers, the declining global demand for flat and float glass should also be considered by domestic producers if they want to expand their businesses to overseas markets.

About 906,000 metric tons of glass, valued at $3 million, was exported from Qazvin province during the past Iranian year (ended March 20), which shows close to 36% decline compared with the preceding year, according to director general of the provincial industry, mine and trade organization, Ali Porzahmat. “Iraq, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, India, Afghanistan, Georgia, Armenia and the UAE have been among the major importers of glass from the province,” he was quoted by Mehr news agency as saying. Qazvin produces about 124,000 tons of tinted glass bottles for use in food and medicine packaging annually.