IME weekly trade tops $547m
Iran Mercantile Exchange (IME) announced on Saturday that 417,013 tons of commodities valued at over $547 million were traded in its domestic trading and export halls in the past week (ended March 12).
On the domestic and export metal and mineral trading hall of IME, 142,013 tons of various products worth close to $203 million were traded, according to ime.ir.
At this trading hall, 138,253 tons of steel, 760 tons of aluminum, as well as three kilograms of gold bullion and 3,000 tons of coke were traded.
The report indicates that on domestic and export oil and petrochemical trading halls of IME, 272,525 tons of different commodities with a total value of $354 million were traded.
Also 105,210 of bitumen, 69,518 tons of polymer products, 20,202 tons of chemical products, 910 tons of insulation, 690 tons of base oil as well as 3,600 tons of sulfur were traded.
The IME was set up on September 20, 2007 in accordance with Article 95 of the new law of Securities Market of the Islamic Republic of Iran following the merger of agricultural and metal exchanges of Tehran. The merger marked a new chapter in Iran’s capital market providing many trading opportunities for customers both at home and abroad.
Economic and industrial sectors benefit from the exchange. The IME currently offers various services, such as performing as the first market providing access to the initial offering of the listed commodities in the IME, price discovery and price making for Iran’s over-the-counter (OTC) trade, secondary markets and end users, providing a venue for government sales and procurement purchases, providing a trading platform and user interface, providing clearing and settlement services, risk management, technology services, and training market participants.
Iran’s 11-month crude steel production over 18.5m tons
Domestic Economy Desk
Iran produced over 18.5 million tons of steel ingots during the first 11 months of the current Iranian year (March 21, 2019-February 19, 2020), registering a four percent rise compared to the corresponding figure of preceding year which was 17.7 million tons.
According to a report by IRNA on Saturday, Iranian steelmakers cast 1.493 million tons of steel ingots during a month ending February 19, indicating a three percent drop compared to related figure of last year.
The report also added that steel complexes of the country produced 12.3 million tons of steel products including round bars, pipes, hot rolled and cold rolled plated during the said period, seven percent up comparing the output of last year.
The World Steel Association (WSA) said in its recent report that Iran produced 2.8 million tons of crude steel in January, indicating a 924,000-ton increase compared to the figure for the same period last year, which was 1.9 million tons.
According to the WSA’s January report, Iran’s crude steel production witnessed a 46.7 percent growth compared to the figure for the same time span in 2019, whereas the global average production of the item grew by only 2.1 percent year-on-year.
Iranian steelmakers produced 31.9 million tons of crude steel during 2019, according to the WSA figures.
The statistics show a 17.7 percent rise for Iran compared to the corresponding figure of 2018, which stood at 24.5 million tons.
Iran was the 10th and 14th steelmaker of the world in 2018 and 2017, respectively.
According to the Islamic Republic’s Vision Plan, the country’s total steel production capacity is to hit 55 million tons a year by 2025, with exports figure expected to reach 10-15 million tons.
The World Steel Association (WSA) is one of the largest and most dynamic industry associations in the world. WSA members represent approximately 85 percent of the world’s steel producers, including over 150 steel producers with nine of the 10 largest steel companies, national and regional steel industry associations and steel research institutes.
Iran, Japan, UNIDO set to cooperate on fishery development
Iran, Japan and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) signed a trilateral agreement to cooperate on the third phase of a project for developing advanced fishery in the port city of Chabahar in southeastern Iran.
The €180,000 agreement was signed as a part of five cooperation documents between UNIDO and Japan at the UNIDO headquarters in Vienna, in presence of permanent representatives of Iran, Japan, Iraq, Pakistan, South Africa, and Uganda, reported Fars News Agency.
Japan had previously provided €680,000 to finance the first and second phases of the project.
In his statement during the signing ceremony, Kazem Gharibabadi, Iran’s ambassador to the Vienna-based international organizations, underlined the strategic position of Chabahar port.
According to the official, Chabahar port provides facilitates for transiting commodities between countries located at the northern side of the Indian Ocean and Central Asian countries.
He stressed the significance of international cooperation to help boost the sustainable growth of the countries and called for sharing experience and technology to counter the challenges facing economic development.
Gharibabadi urged the need for an immediate lifting of illegal sanctions and restrictions imposed on certain countries which impedes their development.
As Iran’s only oceanic port, Chabahar consists of two separate ports named Shahid Kalantari and Shahid Beheshti, each of which has five berths.
Iran has awarded the development project of this port to India, and the South Asian country committed $500 million to build two new berths in this port.
Back in February, the Indian government announced that the country has doubled the allocated funding for the development of Iran’s Chabahar port in its national budget bill for 2020.
The Indian government has allocated nearly $14 million for the Chabahar Port project in the 2020 budget, while the allocation in the last budget was about $7 million.
Nine-month economic growth stands at 1.2%: CBI
The governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) announced the country’s 1.2 percent economic growth for the first nine months of the current Iranian year (March 21-December 21, 2019).
In an Instagram post, Abdolnaser Hemmati wrote, “According to the reports of the CBI, non-oil economic growth in the said months stood at 3.3 percent, while including oil, the growth rate reached 1.2 percent, in this period,” reported Mehr News Agency on Saturday.
“Sectors of agriculture, industry-mining and services, with growth rates of 7.8 percent, 7 percent and 1.2 percent respectively, had the main role in the gained growth rate,” he added.
The senior banking official hoped for production prosperity of Iran in near future and after beating coronavirus outburst.
The CBI in February officially launched its new scheme for helping small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and other manufacturers with an initial credit worth of $3.7 billion.
Hemmati said on February 4 that the new credit facility, dubbed the Productive Line of Credit, or GAM in Persian, would enable manufacturers to obtain documents from the banks that would guarantee payments owed to suppliers of raw materials and others on the supply chain.
Hemmati said an initial fund of 3.7 billion had been earmarked for the scheme through resources of four major Iranian banks, namely Bank Melli Iran, Bank Saderat Iran, Bank Tejarat, and Bank Mellat.
“These credits would gradually be given to active manufacturing units in the country,” said the chief banker, adding that SMEs were a main focus of the credit facility as the government seeks to help them survive the current economic situation of the country.
Officials have said that letters of credit issued under GAM can also be sold in the market with a discount, enabling the manufacturers to access the cash they need for their activities.
Experts say the new scheme would prevent any inflation that could be caused by government’s massive injection of liquidity in the market.
The launch of the credit facility comes despite tight finances at the CBI and amid government efforts to diversify the economy away from oil as Iran’s direct sale of crude, once a staple of government funds, remains under American sanctions.
Hemmati said GAM was a manifestation of CBI programs to help Iranian economy grow without relying on oil revenues.
Iranian automaker unveils first six-speed manual gearbox
Iran Khodro Company (IKCO) unveiled Iran’s first domestically manufactured six-speed manual gearbox on Saturday.
The gearbox was unveiled during a ceremony on Saturday with the presence of Sadeq Niaraki, Iran’s deputy industry, mine, and trade minister for industry affairs and IKCO Managing Director Farshad Moqimi, reported ikcopress.ir.
According to Moqimi, the technology for producing the gearbox has been fully indigenized and the gearbox will be mass-produced within the second half of the next Iranian year (September 22, 2020-March 20, 2021).
“By the end of the next Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2021) over 10,000 vehicles will be equipped with the mentioned gearbox,” Moqimi said.
Increasing the Iranian engineers’ and designers’ capability in designing and manufacturing gearboxes, improving drivability, improving gearbox quality, increasing customer satisfaction and reducing after-sales service costs are mentioned to be some of the benefits of the production of such gearboxes.
Using the new six-speed gearboxes is going to reduce the automobiles’ fuel consumption by at least 1.5 percent comparing to the current five-speed gearboxes, the official said.
IKCO is also going to produce automatic six-speed gearboxes in the Q4 of the next Iranian year.
According to the IKCO head, 60 percent of the technology and equipment used in the automatic gearboxes will be domestic.
“By the end of the next Iranian year 1,000 automatic six-speed gearboxes will be produced and installed on various vehicles,” Moqimi said.
According to the official, marketing studies show that at least 100,000 manual and automatic gearboxes are needed each year in the Iranian market, and Iran Khodro has considered this demand in its product development roadmap.
Over 30 billion cubic meters of water is stored behind the dams of Iran, announced Mohammad Rasouliha, the managing director of Iran Water Resources Management Company, IRNA reported.