Almost 91,400 tons of gypsum and concrete valued at 16.2 billion rials (equal to $1.8 million) was exported during March-September this year.
Announcing this, a member of the Gypsum Association’s Information Bureau, Rahimeh Mousavi, further told ILNA on Tuesday that the figure is trivial and not worthy of consideration for export award.
She said that Afghanistan, Iraq and Persian Gulf littorals states are the major importers of Iranian gypsum, adding that the United States government has expanded financial support for its gypsum exporters to capture new markets, including the one in Iraq.
“This is while despite the great potentials, high transportation cost is hindering further growth in Iran’s gypsum exports to regional markets.
“The Export Development Center of Iran announced recently that it will cover a portion of transportation costs but nothing practical has been done to date,“ she said.
Mousavi noted that although Iran’s transportation fleet has a large capacity, high costs have prevented the optimal use of these potentials.
She added gypsum and concrete exports during the corresponding period last year (March-September 2004) exceeded 102,000 tons valued at 15.6 billion rials (equal to $1.9 million).
“These figures indicate that gypsum exports during the said period of the current year declined by 11.2 and 5.4 percent in terms of weight and value respectively.“
Iran’s Mining House in a report said that Iran is the world’s largest producer of gypsum.
The report put Iran’s annual gypsum production at 13 million tons, which it said is 8.6 percent of the total global output.
There are at least 345 gypsum mines in Iran. Some 6.7 million tons of gypsum was extracted during March-October 2004.
Iran’s gypsum reserves have been estimated at 2.2 billion tons.
Gypsum accounts for 10 percent of the country’s mining activities each year.
Gypsum is mainly used for construction purposes in Iran.