Nalco told to raise man­u­fac­tur­ing ca­pac­ity to 20 lakh tonnes

Resource Digest - - CONTENT -

Na­tional Alu­minium Com­pany Ltd ( Nalco), a pub­lic sec­tor unit un­der the Min­istry of Mines, has been asked to raise its alu­minium smelter ca­pac­ity to at least 20 lakh tonnes to en­sure more of the mineral is utilised within the coun­try in­stead of be­ing ex­ported.

“I have asked Nalco to pre­pare a prospec­tive fu­ture plan raise ca­pac­ity to 20 lakh tonnes from the present 4.6 lakh tonnes… Nalco has been ex­port­ing alu­mina for sev­eral years while the coun­try keeps im­port­ing the mineral. We must utilise the mineral within the coun­try to over­come such a sce­nario,” said Piyush Goyal, Min­is­ter of State ( In­de­pen­dent Charge) for Mines, Coal, Power and New & Re­new­able En­ergy, at the sidelines of the Con­fed­er­a­tion of In­dian Industry’s Sus­tain­abil­ity Sum­mit.

“They had a full- fledged ex­pan­sion plan, which was formed some years ago, but it never took off and the rea­son they gave was elec­tric­ity is too costly in the coun­try. In­stead, they went for a tie- up with Iran to ex­port alu­mina there and pro­duce alu­minium in Iran as power is cheaper there,” Goyal added.

The Min­is­ter also said that the he will soon start a pub­lic dis­course to put an end to alu­mina ex­ports. For mak­ing alu­minium metal, baux­ite, which is the raw mineral, is first re­fined to alu­mina, which is also known as alu­minium ox­ide, which gets rid of im­pu­ri­ties. Alu­mina is then fed to alu­minium smelters to make the metal.

While Nalco’s alu­minium smelter ca­pac­ity is only 4.6 lakh tonnes, it makes around 20 lakh tonnes per year.

HY­DRO POWER

Speak­ing about In­dia’s re­new­able en­ergy ca­pac­ity at the sum­mit, Goyal said that In­dia should start count­ing its hy­dro power ca­pac­ity un­der re­new­able en­ergy.

“World over, the prac­tice is to in­clude hy­dro power as re­new­able en­ergy. Our of­fi­cers have pre­pared a plan for im­ple­ment­ing the same in In­dia. We will open it up for pub­lic dis­cus­sion soon… If In­dia counts hy­dro power, then by 2022, our re­new­able en­ergy ca­pac­ity will be 225,000 MW,” he said.

PIYUSH GOYAL, MIN­IS­TER OF STATE ( IN­DE­PEN­DENT CHARGE) FOR MINES, COAL, POWER AND NEW & RE­NEW­ABLE EN­ERGY

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