TEHRAN (FNA)- Close to 15 tons will be added to the country’s gold reserves by the end of current year (March 2009), said director of exploitation affairs at the National Geology and Mineral Exploration Organization.
Behrouz Borna also told the Islamic republic news agency that 10 tons pertains to western reserves and the rest is located in the eastern part of the country.
The official put the current proven gold reserves at 250-300 tons.
“Based on a short-term program, gold production will reach five tons per year. Under the long-term plan, the figure will rise to 25 tons per annum,” he said.
Borna noted that the National Geology and Mineral Exploration Organization has undertaken overseas explorations.
“Iran is negotiating with 10 ECO nations to send experts for conducting exploration activities” he said.
The organization has also signed deals with African and South American countries to explore mines.
The official also said that permits have been issued for conducting explorations in several gold-bearing regions.
He listed Meydouk in Shahr-e Babak (Kerman province), Khorapeh in Piranshahr (West Azarbaijan), Nabijan in Kalaybar and Alikh in Jolfa (both in East Azarbaijan province), Logheh (Zanjan province) and Qolqoleh (Kurdestan province) as the gold-rich regions.
Borna pointed out that Saqqez and Piranshahr in the west as well as Maherabad and Sheikhabad in east are also main gold-rich regions of Iran.
“In total, potential areas for finding gold exist in 20 provinces,” he said.