Economy, Business And Markets

Changes to Iron Ore Export Duties Slammed

Changes to Iron Ore Export Duties SlammedChanges to Iron Ore Export Duties Slammed

The Iranian Association of Steel Manufacturers has criticized the frequent changes to the iron ore export duties, reported Fooladnews.

The recent decision by the administration to remove the export duties on iron ore was made due to stagnation in the global iron ore market, but imposing duties and then removing them shortly after badly effects the market, said Rasool Khalifeh Soltan, the association secretary.

He added that imposing duties on iron ore is logical, but it should be a gradual process, like increasing it 5% annually so that a 20% increase in four years would be tolerable for producers. The iron ore producers, Khalifeh Soltan said, need to be given an opportunity to plan for production and processing.

In the past two years, Iran’s government imposed a tax of up to 40% on iron ore exports to take advantage of a surge in sales to China, aiming to replace revenue from oil and other sources, which have been hit by sanctions. Iran’s revenue from exports of oil and other goods decreased since the United States and the European Union imposed economic sanctions in an effort to pressure Tehran over its nuclear energy program.

Since President Hassan Rouhani took office last August, the ministry of industry, mine, and trade began to reverse the previous policies towards iron ore export duties by significantly reducing the rates and completely removing them in the end.

Industry and steel officials say by launching numerous steel plants and iron ore concentrate and iron ore pellet manufacturing units, Iran will not have to export raw materials over the next two years.

Currently, another 14 million metric tons of iron ore concentrate is expected to be added to the annual production capacity, which should be used by the iron ore concentrate plants; otherwise the needed amount will be exported.