Public sector National Aluminium Company (NALCO) is ready to invest Rs. 7,000 crore to Rs. 12,000 crore in a greenfield alumina refinery in Visakhapatnam. NALCO Chairman and Managing Director T.K. Chand said on Wednesday that they had requested the Centre to consider allotment of bauxite mines in Visakhapatnam.
Mr. Chand said allotment of bauxite ore in Visakhapatnam would provide them greater raw material security. He said they wanted to set up a 1.4 million tonne or 2 million tonne refinery, needing an investment of Rs. 7,000 crore to Rs. 12,000 crore. More investment will follow on smelter complex and captive power plant.
He said investment by NALCO would not be opposed as it was in the public sector with a proven track-record for development and robust CSR activity in Odisha.
While admitting that they had received requests from Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh for investment in their respective States, he pointed out that their first priority would be Andhra Pradesh due to the distinctive advantage of its proximity to their projects in Odisha.
The CMD said they were expanding their alumina refinery at Damonjodi in Koraput district from 2.1 million tonne to 3.1 million tonne with an estimated investment of Rs. 5,540 crore.
The new facility would ensure an assured net profit of Rs. 275 crore per annum. It would be completed by 2021. The Panchapatmali bauxite mines have been rated as the second lowest cost producer in the world in 2017 by Wood Mackenzie. NALCO aims to become number one during the current fiscal.
Bauxite mines (north central block) at Panchapatmali achieved 100% capacity utilisation with transportation of 68.25 lakh tonne for the second consecutive year. Production in south block, the new mine, was launched during the last quarter of 2017-18.
Stating that NALCO had achieved global benchmark of low-cost producer of bauxite mining and alumina-making, he said during 2017-18 it had registered over 100% growth by posting a net profit of Rs. 1,342 crore against Rs. 669 crore last year. During the year, the company was adjudged the third highest net foreign exchange earning CPSE in the country.
He said the net sales turnover during 2017-18 was Rs. 9,377 crore, the highest since inception in 1981, accounting for a growth of 26% over the previous year. Export earning of Rs. 4,076 crore, also the highest since inception, registered a growth of 12% over the previous year.