Nalco to invest Rs30,000 cr for expansion by 2027-28
18 January 2021
National Aluminium Company Limited (Nalco), a Schedule-A Navratna central public sector enterprise under the ministry of mines, plans to invest around Rs30,000 crore by financial year 2027-28 for expansion and diversification of business activities, union minister for coal and mines Pralhad Joshi has said.
Joshi was addressing the 41st Foundation Day of Nalco at the company’s headquarters in Bhubaneswar, the capital of Odisha, on Friday.
Out of this proposed investment, the company will spend over Rs7,000 crore on the 5th stream refinery, Pottangi bauxite mines, bauxite transportation system from south block and Utkal D&E coal mines. The remaining Rs22000 crore will be spent on smelter and captive power plant (CPP) expansion, which also include expansion of the company’s smelter plant at Angul district in Odisha with construction of a 1,400 MW feeder CPP.
“With the ambitious growth plans that Nalco has for the future, it will contribute significantly to the alumina and aluminium sectors having a multiplier effect in the production and consumption of this strategic metal and achieve `Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ goals,” Joshi said.
Joshi also said the central government is extending all round support to the mineral rich Odisha to avoid any interruption in mineral production in the country. He stressed that in view of the requests made from state government, the centre will amend concerned rules so that smooth production of minerals could be ensured and non-serious players barred from participating in mineral block auctions.
“Specially to expedite iron ore production in Odisha, we have approved the proposals to allot 2 iron ore mining blocks to Odisha Mineral Corporation and 1 block to Odisha Mineral Exploration Corporation Ltd on the request of the state.” Joshi said.
Odisha Mineral Exploration Corporation Ltd (OMECL) and Mineral Exploration Corporation Ltd (MECL) also signed an MoU for exploration of mineral blocks of OMECL which, he said, would help unleash the mineral potential in the state thorough extensive surveys and exploration. Moreover, in order to expedite the auction of mineral blocks in Odisha, relaxation in norms is also being considered, he added.
Notably, the mines ministry has introduced an auction regime for allotment of mineral blocks in India through an amendment made in MMDR Act in 2015. As per laid down procedures made through this amendment, leases for 46 mineral blocks were getting expired in March 2020, a majority of which are situated in Odisha. To keep the mineral productions uninterrupted, the central government brought The Mineral Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020, in January 2020, that broadly mandated the state governments to take advance action for auction of mineral blocks so that the new lease holder could be decided before existing lease gets expired.
Also, it was mandated that approvals and clearances shall automatically get transferred to the new owners of mineral blocks for a period of two years from the date of grant of new lease. During this period, the new owners could apply and get fresh clearances. This helped the new owners to continue with hassle free mining operations.
Joshi said Naco, in association with the government of Odisha is also setting up a world class Aluminium Park in Angul, in close proximity to its Smelter Plant to encourage development of downstream and ancillary industries in Odisha. This will enhance employment in the area and give a boost to local entrepreneurship.
Nalco is one of the largest integrated bauxite-alumina-aluminium- power complex in Asia, accounting for 32 per cent of bauxite, 33 per cent of alumina and 12 per cent of aluminium production in India.
It is also the lowest cost producer of alumina and bauxite in the world.
With business in more than 15 countries, NALCO is rated as one of the highest net foreign exchange earning CPSE in the country. The company has its operations in the tribal dominated district of Koraput and Angul in Odisha.