TEHRAN (Press TV) - Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has inaugurated four major metals and trade projects in the country as his government presses ahead with plans to diversify the economy away from oil revenues.
The projects came on line on Thursday in a ceremony at Rouhani’s office where he used a video conference call to roll them out.
Rouhani’s website said in a report that some 85.2 trillion rials ($330 million) had been spent on the four projects which included two iron ore pelletizing plants, a major wharf and a food exports processing facility.
The projects create a total of 1,460 permanent jobs in three Iranian provinces, said the report.
The largest of them, a pelletizing plant in Sirjan, a hub of Iran’s iron mining operations in the southeastern province of Kerman, is owned by private investors who have spent $150 million to bring it on line, it said.
Another privately-owned pelletizing plant opened on Thursday is located in the Persian Gulf Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in the southern Hormozgan province, added the report.
The two trade projects opened by Rouhani included a fifth wharf in South Parsian SEZ and an agrifood export terminal in the northern province of Mazandaran.
Boosting non-oil trade has been a major component of plans by Rouhani’s administration to diversify the Iranian economy as the government has been struggling to offset the impacts of U.S. sanctions on the country’s oil exports.
Along petrochemicals, metals and agrifood have been responsible for a bulk of export shipments sent from Iran to other countries in the past two years.
The government continues to support development schemes in those two sectors as they bring more hard currency and create more jobs in the country.