The five bidders are: Germany’s Mannesmann Demag, Italy’s Danieli & Company, Italy’s STB Tecnosiderurgica Bresciana with Germany-registered Mines & Metals Engineering, Shanghai Golden Source International Economic & Trade Development Company with Shogan Company, both of China, and the local Foolad Gostaresh Industrial Company. The engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract also calls for financing, which foreign companies are at the moment unwilling to bring to Iran’s uncertain political environment.

Kaavian is a subsidiary of Iranian Mines & Industries Renovation & Development Organisation (IMIDRO), part of the Mines & Industry Ministry.