This Article is From Oct 23, 2013

Hope to secure clearance for Malanjkhand expansion by December: Hind Copper

Hope to secure clearance for Malanjkhand expansion by December: Hind Copper

State-owned Hindustan Copper has said it is hopeful of securing National Wildlife Board's permission by December for expanding its flagship Malanjkhand mine in Madhya Pradesh, which is the single largest copper deposit of India with nearly 70 per cent of the country's reserves.

Expansion of the Malanjkhand mine to 5.2 million tonnes per annum capacity (MTPA) has already been held up by over one and half years due to delays in securing various regulatory approvals.

Hindustan Copper (HCL) had secured environment clearance last month for expanding the capacity of the mine subject to a final clearance from National Wildlife Board as the mine is located only 20 km from the Kanha National Park. "State Wildlife Board has given its recommendation, now it has been sent to National Wildlife Board, where we have submitted the required documents. We hope to get the forest

clearance by December if everything goes as per plan. There is no delay on our side," company's Chairman and Managing Director Kailash Dhar Diwan said.

He was speaking to reporters after presenting a dividend cheque of Rs 83.27 crore to Mines Minister Dinsha Patel. In 2012-13, the company had reported its best ever profit after tax of Rs 355.64 crore.

The Malanjkhand mine currently has a production capacity of 2.25 million tonnes and contributes about 80 per cent of Hindustan Copper's total production. It has extractable copper reserves of 141 million tonnes, amounting to 70 per cent of India's known copper reserves.

The company has set a target of completing the expansion of mine by 2017 despite the delays and will be spending about Rs 1,857 crore for the purpose. Of that, the company has already awarded contracts worth Rs 1,176 crore, Diwan said.