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New Iranian Plant to Produce Philips TVs Under License
Jan 27, 2004
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Two Iranian firms and Philips Electronics of the Netherlands have agreed to build a factory that will produce color TVs in the Persian Gulf island of Qeshm by the end of the current Iranian year (March 20, 2004). Project manager Saeed Nickravesh told reporters that the assembly line has been installed, and "with first material arriving soon, the production is set to begin."

Total capital investment stands at rls 10 billion (U.S. $1.26 million) with the production slated to top 500 sets daily under the license from Phillips.

Mr. Nickravesh listed several advantages to investing in Qeshm, including preferential transit fees and access to financing from domestic, foreign banks, and the Hard Currency Fund.

He said under the agreement, one-third of the production will be marketed domestically. In the first year, with a planned total output of 40,000 sets annually, 10,000 will be exported and the rest offered in the domestic market, he added.

Mr. Nickravesh also said production expenses in the island are competitive with world markets costs, adding that the direct employment in the project will be 80 workers.

Meanwhile, a memorandum of understanding was signed last month between Iran's Aria electronic company and Japan's Supra company for production of color TV sets and household appliances. Saleh Vahedi, head of the Iranian company, said the production capacity is 180,000 color TV sets and other household appliances annually. The current production is slated to reach 50 percent of the nominal capacity, he added.

Mr. Vahedi also criticized the government policy of reducing tariffs on imported color TV sets, saying the step will benefit importers. "Furthermore," he said, "the constantly changing laws are bound to hurt the domestic producers."

He said the country's TV needs are about 2 million sets annually. Domestic manufacturers have the capacity of producing 2 million sets a year, Mr. Vahedi noted, "but, due to various factors they are producing below their capacity of about 1.2 million sets per year." (IRNA)

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