Indian mining firm Vedanta has abandoned its plan to offload its Sterlite Copper smelter located in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, reported Bloomberg News.
Vedanta’s Sterlite Copper Business operates the 400,000mtpa copper smelter with associated facilities such as a refinery and copper rod plant, a sulphuric acid plant and a
Vedanta’s Sterlite Copper Business operates the 400,000mtpa copper smelter with associated facilities such as a refinery and copper rod plant, a 1.2Mmtpa sulphuric acid plant and a 220,000mtpa phosphoric acid plant.
In June 2022, Vedanta selected Axis Capital to assist in its process to sell its assets.
The miner is now considering restarting the smelter, which was shuttered in 2018 following orders from the state government.
This decision by the government came after more than a dozen people were killed due to police firing on villagers, who protested over concerns linked to the facility’s pollution.
The smelter restart plan would help India boost production and reduce imports of copper, which is expected to contribute to the country’s aim to shift toward electric vehicles and renewables.
Vedanta spokesman was cited by the news agency as saying in an emailed statement that India ‘can’t afford to close this plant permanently when the demand for copper is at its peak in the country’.
The spokesman added: “There has been a positive sway among the people of the region with more voices coming forward to support the reopening of the plant.”
Separately, Hindustan Zinc, a Vedanta group company, has deployed Normet Agitator SmartDrive EV in its underground mining operations.
Over the next five years, Hindustan Zinc plans to invest more than $1bn to convert its diesel-run 900-odd mining vehicles into battery-operated vehicles.
As part of this plan, the company expects to expand its Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) fleet with Normet’s Explosive Charger (CHARMEC MC 605 V SD) and Concrete Sprayer (SPRAYMEC MF 050 VC SD).