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The start of HBI production at Persian Gulf Saba Steel will finally let Iran join the club of merchant DRI producers and exporters.
The start of HBI production at Persian Gulf Saba Steel will finally let Iran join the club of merchant DRI producers and exporters.

Persian Gulf Saba Steel to Become HBI Exporter

Persian Gulf Saba Steel to Become HBI Exporter

Iran is set to enter the export market of metallized products at last, owing to the launch of HBI production at Persian Gulf Saba Steel.

The company aims to start commissioning the DRI unit in January, a company representative told Metal Expert. 

The equipment supplied by MIDREX is capable of producing 1.5 million tons of CDRI/ HBI per year. Initially, it was planned that the company will produce 1.5 million tons per year of billet. 

However, Persian Gulf Saba Steel has not disclosed information about the terms of further expansion plans in the upstream segment. 

“Next steps are being investigated,” the source added.

The start of HBI production at Persian Gulf Saba Steel will finally let Iran join the club of merchant DRI producers and exporters. 

When the country could not import the equipment for HDRI and HBI production during the period of sanctions, a majority of the mills had to set CDRI plants, which had relatively higher operation costs than HDRI/HBI units. 

Moreover, the export potential of CDRI export is limited, as the material is poses transportation risks due to its high flammability. 

“As DRI is active, nitrogen-equipped vessels or nitrogen containers should be used, otherwise it can catch fire,” says Prof. Keyvan Jafari Tehrani, the head of international affairs at IROPEX.

Currently, Iran is a leading DRI producer in the world. Over January-October 2016, the country increased DRI production by 8.4% to 11.94 million tons year-on-year, according to World Steel Association. 

Now Iran gets an opportunity to export HBI and compete with traditional suppliers in this segment, such as Venezuela, Malaysia, Russia, India, Libya and Trinidad and Tobago.

“Our company’s policy is the export of HBI. We have already been negotiating with several companies in this regard,” said a representative of Persian Gulf Saba Steel.

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