'Reviving 1,000 idle stone mines a necessity'

January 4, 2021 - 11:27

TEHRAN- The secretary-general of Iran Stone Association has emphasized the necessity of revving 1,000 idle stone mines across the country.

Ahmad Sharifi has said that the precise implementation of the small-scale mines reviving plan can lead to the return of 1,000 decorative stone and facade stone mines to the production and export cycle.

The small-scale mines reviving plan is one of the best government’s programs in the mining sector, but differences in the tastes of government officials in this area have hampered the expected progress in this sector, he lamented.

He further said, “Studies show that the annual capacity of the country's stone mines is more than 30 million tons, but now in the current situation it has reached about eight to nine million tons and needs to be reconsidered. Why have we reached the production of about one-third of the capacity in this sector?”

The Industry, Mining and Trade Ministry has announced that there are 4,000 idle mines throughout the country.

As announced by the ministry, from the 5,600 active mines of Iran, 400 million tons of minerals are averagely extracted per annum.

The figure was 410 million tons in the previous Iranian calendar year (ended on March 19, 2020).

In mid-October, the previous head of Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO) had announced that 157 idle small-scale mines had been revived throughout the country since the beginning of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2020).

Saying that the mentioned mines had been reactivated as part of a comprehensive program for reviving idle small mines across the country, Khodadad Gharibpour also announced that 200 mines were planned to be put back into operation by the end of the year.

As reported, under the framework of the mentioned program, 672 idle mines have been identified and prioritized in the current Iranian calendar year, and diagnostic procedures have been performed on 194 mines to determine the reasons for the halt in their production.

According to Gharibpour, since the beginning of the program in March 2019 up to date 303 mines had been revived.

The mentioned program, which has been at the forefront of IMIDRO's missions over the past two years, is being pursued in several provinces.

The head of IMIDRO has mentioned this plan as one of the most significant plans of “Resistance Economy”, saying that IMIDRO is strongly determined to carry out it.

Reviving the small mines not only is a major step toward materializing “Surge in Production”, which is the motto of the current Iranian calendar year, it also plays a significant role in job creation throughout the country, Gharibpour said back in June.

MA/MA

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