Economy, Business And Markets

Steel Confab in May

Steel Confab in MaySteel Confab in May

Iran’s Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO) will jointly hold the International Iranian Iron & Steel Conference on Kish Island next May, reported Fooladnews on Tuesday.

International conference will be held in cooperation with Metal Bulletin, a specialist international publisher and information provider for the global steel, non-ferrous, and scrap metals markets, said Mehdi Karbasian, the head of IMIDRO.

Karbasian, who is also the deputy minister of industry, mine, and trade, said Kish Island is an ideal location for the conference since the foreigners do not need to obtain a visa and there are many flights to Kish from neighboring Dubai. He predicted that many large companies would attend the conference.  

Main agenda of the upcoming conference is said to be the sanctions imposed on Iran over its nuclear energy program and their impacts on the country’s iron and steel industry. Imposing tariffs on Chinese steel products will also be discussed during the conference.

Domestic steel manufacturers have long been calling on the administration to impose protective tariffs in order to confront China’s dumping policy with regard to the global steel trade. They have proposed import tariffs of 25% for different types of girders, 35% for bundles of rebar, and up to 15% for billets and ingots. The threat posed by Chinese steel comes as the officials say they are removing the obstacles in the way of financing several provincial steel projects. The financial resources for these projects were supposed to be provided by Chinese companies.

China Metallurgical Group Corporation (MCC), which annually produces 750 million metric tons of steel, has promised to accelerate the financing of Iranian steel projects including the ones being implemented in the cities of Mianeh in the west, Shadegan in the south, and Baft in the southeast of the country.

IMIDRO stressed that the unfinished provincial steel plants should be completed within the next three years, pledging to make a concentrated effort to resolve the issue.

According to the Chinese law, when a Chinese company finances a foreign project, 70% of the production should be owned by the Chinese side. But the positive point about Iran’s seven provincial steel projects is that the production will be shared equally.

Steel projects were launched almost seven years ago but were halted later due to a shortage of finances.

Minister of Industry, mine, and trade, Mohammadreza Nematzadeh, believes the steel projects should neither be financed through the banking system nor by the National Development Fund but by distribution and sale of government bonds and attraction of foreign investment.

China’s MCC has agreed to invest $2.24 billion in Iran’s provincial steel projects. Iran’s total crude steel production during the past year (ended March 20, 2014) amounted to over 15.6 million tons, showing an increase of 8.8% compared to the same period last year.