HCL to Expand Copper Production
The entire funding for the expansion would be raised through fresh issue of equity shares to Qualified Institutional Placements (QIPs), and following the placement of the instrument, the Indian government’s equity holding in HCL will be reduced to 66.13% from 76.05% at present.
The expansion plans of HCL comes close on the heels of the closure of Vedanta’s Sterlite Copper plant at Tuticorin in southern state of Tamil Nadu following incidents of pollution and local protests. Although details have not yet been officially unveiled, it was learned that the company will revive its mothballed Khetri Copper Plant in central desert state of Rajasthan.
The revival of the Khetri smelter and acid producing facility would enable HCL to add about 31,000 mt/y of refined copper to its annual production capacity. The Khetri copper plant was expected to reach a capacity utilization of 120% over a period of time and increase domestic copper production against the anticipated backdrop of domestic shortage, which was the highest priority of the company.