Vedanta shuts down Odisha alumina refinery

Bhubaneswar:  Vedanta Aluminium Limited (VAL) on Wednesday temporarily shut down its alumina refinery in Odisha's Kalahandi district due to shortage of bauxite, the company said.

The one-million-tonne per annum alumina refinery at Lanjigarh, about 500 kilometres from Bhubaneswar, has been facing raw material shortage since it was commissioned August 2007.

The company was running the plant by sourcing the raw materials from different states as the earmarked mines located in a nearby Niyamgiri Hills could not be commissioned till date.

For the last few days it had cut down output by 80 per cent as its stock of bauxite exhausted. Bauxite is the key raw material used to produce alumina.

"The refinery would re-start only after sustainable supplies of the bauxite" VAL president and chief operating officer Mukesh Kumar said.

Set up on an investment of $800 million, VAL requires three lakh tonnes of bauxite per month to run the refinery at full capacity.

Vedanta had entered into a supply arrangement with Odisha government who was to supply bauxite through a state agency from Niyamgiri Hills located near the refinery but its clearance is mired in litigation.

It has also applied for several other bauxite reserves in the state, but none of them have materialised so far. The VAL is an associate company of the London-listed Vedanta Resources Plc.

Story First Published: December 05, 2012 19:28 IST

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