Vedanta to Invest Rs 8,400-cr in Rajasthan Mining Base
The Vedanta group signed an early agreement to invest around `8,400 crore to expand and develop its mineral and mining base in Rajasthan. This is part of more than `20,000 crore of investment lined up by Vedanta to expand its mining and oil business in the western Indian state over 3-5 years.
The latest memorandum of understanding follows an MoU signed recently by group company Cairn India to develop new oilfields.
While Vedanta unit Hindustan Zinc (HZL) plans to invest `8,400 crore to develop and expand zinc-lead ore mines and smelters, as well as in a new fertilizer plant, Cairn has promised to pump in `12,500 crore.
“We have signed a MoU today with the Rajasthan government worth `8,357 crore to be invested in coming three years,” HZL Chief Executive Sunil Duggal said.
A few of the leading global zinc mines have closed down in recent times and Duggal said the investment has been planned to go on stream close to the next cyclical peak of the zinc business. “Our focus is on low-cost operations with an eye on keeping fixed costs low and improving internal efficiencies that help us remain relatively risk free,” he said.
Union ministers Narendra Singh Tomar and Piyush Goyal, as well as Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje were present at the MoU signing event. Zinc demand has been growing at 5% in India this year, higher than the global rate of 3%.
“Our per capita consumption of zinc is much lower than global average. We hope to see domestic demand climb up in next few years if galvanised sheets are used to manufacture cars for the home market, which is presently not the case,” Duggal said. An upcoming segment is galvanised bars used in construction, he added. The investment will go into various districts like Udaipur, Rajsamand, Chittorgarh, Bhilwara and Ajmer, an official statement said.
HZL has mines in Rampura Agu cha, Sindesar Khurd, Zawar, Rajpu ra Dariba and Kayad while its smelters are in Dariba, Chanderiya and Debari.
The company is also looking at expanding its underground mines Duggal said. Its target is to increase mine production to 12.80 million tonnes per annum from 9.09 mtpa and finished metal production to 1.028 mtpa from 0.85 mtpa.
It plans to spend another `1,350 crore on setting up a fertilizer plant to produce 0.5 mtpa of di-ammonium phosphate at Debari in Udaipur district.
The company hopes to built the facility in three years. It is projected to generate nearly 7,000 jobs.
Cairn India plans to take up projects in Barmer and Jalore districts to develop the Mangala-Bhagyam extended oil recovery, Mangla-Aishwariya in-fills and Raageshwar Deep Gas field, as well as setting up a sulphate removal plant.