The Tehran subway system has started using home-made escalators to save nearly $15 million in money spent on imports of equipment from abroad.
The Tehran Metro said in a statement on Tuesday that eight sets of Iranian-made escalators had been deployed for the first time to one of the stations along the seventh lane of the subway system earlier in the day.
“The indigenization of products used in the capital’s underground railway system has been on agenda in recent times and fortunately today the manufacturing of the 100-percent Iranian-made escalator has come to fruition,” said the statement.
It said an unidentified local company commissioned with manufacturing the escalators would supply a batch of 147 sets, all of them for use in the seventh lane of the subway system.
The opening of the 27-kilometer lane, which spans from southeast to northwest of Tehran, has been delayed in recent years reportedly because of lack of access to foreign-made equipment needed to finish the stations.
That comes as American sanctions on Iran have triggered a growth in local manufacturing of machinery and equipment needed in the construction industry.
Localized production of escalators come after reports earlier this year suggested that Iranian steelmakers had managed to produce special components used in manufacturing escalators.
Fathi Almas, a company based near Tehran, identifies itself as the only manufacturer of escalators in Iran and in the Middle East. The company signed a partnership agreement with a German manufacturer in 2016 to start local production for escalators and lifts.
A report by the official IRNA news agency said that escalators previously supplied from abroad used to cost the Tehran Metro around $100,000 per each set, adding that the subway system had saved nearly $15 million by using the services of a local manufacturer in its seventh lane.