Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Iranian TIMco Exploring Overseas Mines

IranMania -- An Iranian company is involved in mining projects in Saudi Arabia and the Horn of Africa, Iran Daily reported.

TIMco has already started mining zinc, lead and silver in these countries, declared a member of the board of directors of Iran's Zinc Mines Development Company Houshang Adhami.

The official said the projects are already in the process of becoming operational, prompting the company to consider purchasing concentrates for establishing a factory in Bafq.

"Expanding the market for Iranian lead and zinc ores was one of the objectives of establishing the company," he said, noting that exploring new markets in Africa has made the export lead and copper ingots and wastes to Ethiopia and Egypt possible," Moj news agency further quoted him as saying.

According to Adhami, TIMco also directly supplies zinc and lead to Indonesia and China.

"Today, the bulk of mining exports are conducted via TIMco thanks to the company's success in coordinating the activities of producers as a result of which Iranian products are selling at a good price in overseas markets."

He said the company has also managed to absorb a considerable amount of cash from foreign sources at low interest rates, and called on the government to expedite the process for issuing ownership deeds in the sector as a guarantee for attracting more funds.

Adhami said that contrary to domestic banks, foreign banks currently do not require guarantees to extend loans to the company.

This, he said, in fact provides an excellent opportunity for further development of the mining sector by using low-interest foreign loans.

"By acquiring insurance to cover the difference in the parity rate, the 18 percent interest rate charged by domestic banks can be cut down to eight percent as this will streamline the implementation of projects," he said, adding that the company's application for receiving a 50-million-dollar loan from a foreign banks has been accepted.

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