Tehran – Some 20 foreign companies – from countries including Germany, Italy, France, Poland, South Korea, India, Turkey, Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan – are planning to invest in Iran’s Qazvin Industrial Towns (QIT), according to the company’s CEO. The new industrial areas of QIT aim to stimulate Iran’s production of chemical products including PU materials, pharmaceutical precursors, PE and PET bottles, elastomeric automotive parts, PVC, sodium silicate, and CASE materials.
Reza Saffari, the CEO of Qazvin Industrial Towns said more than €490million will be invested in the industrial areas, creating employment for more than 2000 people.
“These companies have been established in industrial areas and towns in Qazvin such as Caspian, Lia, Heidarieh, Hakimiyeh, and Khoramdasht. By now, 12 units have been operated and the rest of them are in the stage of allocating land, building the wall, etc. which will be operated soon,” said Saffari.
Iran’s drive for self-sufficiency in the production of polyurethane foam
As previously reported in Urethanes Technology International, Iran intends to increase indigenous PU foam production, mainly through key player Karun Petrochemical, to prevent costly imports – as the country is still subject to many international sanctions.
Iranian officials stated that, before the indigenisation process began, 200kt of polyols and isocyanates were imported into the country annually, a $440m hit to its trade balance. But Karun’s efforts are leading the country’s PU industry towards self-sufficiency. The company recently introduced its KCS-20 formulation for car seat foam.
Saipa is one of Iran’s “big two” automotive manufacturers, with a 33% market share. The company, formerly known as Saipac, was established in 1968 to produce the two-cylinder Saipac Jiane, a licence-built version of the Citroën Dyane, and today builds cars mostly based on platforms licensed from Kia, Toyota and China Brilliance.
Saeid Alizadeh, CEO of Saipa Automotive, said his company is using 40t of KCS-20 annually for automotive seat manufacturing, which is decreasing the company’s reliance on imports.
Alizadeh said: “Polyurethane foam is widely used in different industrial areas with 10-15% used in the vehicle industry, due to its lightness, comfort, durability, variety, and easy recycling. Making it beneficial for making car seats.”
$4m of polyurethane materials exported, and rising
Iran’s Polyurethane Manufacturers Association is critical of companies that continue to import materials, saying that the capacity for polyurethane production in Iran is now 200kt per annum, with 60% going to the home market and 40% to export markets.
Iran Polyurethane Manufacturers Association spokesperson Mohammad Arab said: “Although we [needed to] import polyurethane from the region’s countries [as recently as] three years ago, currently, we do not have any problem in providing for domestic needs, but also, export polyurethane to Turkey, Afghanistan, and other countries in Middle Asia.
“Besides reaching self-sufficiency in polyurethane production, the value of polyurethane exports to various countries has been $4 million dollars, and increasing.”