National Iranian Copper Industries Company (NICICO) has invited engineering firms to build a new copper concentrator plant at Sarcheshmeh in Kerman province.

The project will be carried out in two stages on an engineering, procurement, supervision and training (EPCT) basis. The scheme is open to local contractors or joint ventures with international firms with at least 51 per cent local partner share.

“Prequalification documents are available until 10 working days after the second announcement,” according to the initial tender.

The winning firm will provide basic the plant’s engineering as well as equipment. It will also review and approve the detailed engineering, supervise installation and train staff in the operation of the main equipment.

The plant will process 2,200 tonnes an hour (t/h) of 0.65 per cent grade copper ore to produce approximately 379,000 tonnes a year (t/y) of copper concentrate, with a grade of 26 per cent and 4,100 t/y molybdenum concentrate with a grade of 54 per-cent.

The first package covers grinding and classification, with a capacity to process 2,500 to 4,000 t/h. This includes a semi-autogenous grinding mill, pebble crushers, ball mills and classification circuits.

The second package covers dewatering and filtration. This consists of copper-molybdenum thickeners and copper thickeners with a capacity of 70 t/h of dry product, including copper concentrate filters.

Package three consists of flotation cells for the molybdenum concentrator plant, a grinding mill and cyclone clusters with a production capacity of 4,100 t/y of molybdenum concentrate.

NICICO is listed on the Tehran Stock Exchange and was the largest non-oil exporter in Iran in 2010, with exports worth $1.3bn. The company launched the second phase of its Sarchesmeh plant expansion in 2008, awarding engineering, procurement and construction contracts to local companies, including Iritec and Irasco.