A large gold processing plant came on stream in northwestern Iran on Saturday, doubling the country’s annual production of the metal to six tons.
First Vice President Is’haq Jahangiri attended the inauguration ceremony.
The Zarshouran plant, located near the northwestern city of Takab, was built at a cost of 835 billion rials (about $26 million) plus €15.2 million (about $18.9 million).
The new processing facility, built next to the Zarshouran gold mine, will also produce an estimated 2.5 tons of silver and 1 ton of mercury per year.
The project will create 250 to 300 direct jobs and about 1,000 indirect jobs.
The Zarshouran mine holds proven gold reserves of 110 tons.
Behrouz Borna, the deputy director of the Geological Survey of Iran, announced in May that the volume of Iran’s gold reserves is estimated to be over 340 tons.
Iran ranks 12th in Asia and 42nd in the world in terms of gold reserves, he added.