1033 GMT February 17, 2019
Production of steel billet during the period posted a 14 percent growth year-on-year, said Mehdi Karbasian, chairman of Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO), according to imidro.gov.ir.
Iron ore concentrate and sponge Iron output registered similar output increase of 17 percent and 19 percent respectively YOY.
The production of steel pellet, however, saw the biggest growth — up 38 percent against the figure for the same period last year.
Karbasian, who was speaking at a ceremony for Iran's largest steelmaker, Mobarakeh Steel Company, on Tuesday hailed the increase in steel production in Iran despite impediments created by the imposition of US sanctions.
"Iran's steel sections has been explicitly mentioned in (the list of US) sanctions (against Iran)," he said appreciating Iran's steel producers for their efforts to have the output increased.
"I thanked the officials and managers who have promoted the country's steel industry. This is a national drive (that should continue)," said Karbasian, who also doubles as deputy industries minister.
Iran's steel, metals and minerals trade with the rest of the world was curtailed following the United States' reimposition of sanctions against Iran in August.
The administration of US President Donald Trump reimposed sanctions on trade in metals and minerals with Iran, (alongside some other products) after the US pull-out in May from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPCOA), otherwise known as the Iran Nuclear Deal in May.
Highlighting Iran's success in steel industry, even after the US sanction, Karbasian pointed to the production of iron ore pellets, noting, "In 2016, Mobarakeh Steel Company was among the importers of this product, but now through efforts of its staff, the company is witnessing a growth in the output of this product."
IMIDRO is a state-owned holding company controlling a significant number of the country's major mining companies, including but not limited to National Iranian Steel Company, National Iranian Copper Industries Company, Mobarakeh Steel Company, Zarshouran Gold Company, South Aluminum Company and Iran Minerals Production and Supply Company.
In another development, the Seventh International Conference and Exhibition of Metallurgy and Materials Engineering (iMat) was inaugurated in Tehran on October 9.
The two-day event aims to showcase Iran's capabilities in the field in bid to facilitate foreign investment and transfer of know-how into the country.
Representatives from more than 200 Iranian and 20 foreign companies from countries such as Germany, South Africa, China, Russia, Turkey, Denmark and the Czech Republic are taking part in the event.
The exhibition is held under the motto: 'Countering Sanctions and Support for National Products'.
More than 20 workshop are also to be held on the sidelines of the event.