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To boost production, NINL begins process to choose MDO for iron ore mines

BS Reporter/Bhubaneswar 13 Jul 18 | 02:53 PM

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MMTC promoted steel PSU Neelachal Ispat Nigam Ltd (NINL) has set off the process to chose a Mine Developer cum Operator (MDO) for its captive iron ore mines at Koira. The lease is endowed with 110 million tonnes of iron ore deposits and its operations hold the key to prune production costs of the NINL plant at Kalinganagar, touted as the steel hub.

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Since the restart of its full-fledged blast furnace operations, NINL has stepped up the production tempo. The steelmaker has set an ambitious target to produce 3500 tonnes of hot metal each day. It has also chalked out plans to diversify into branded steel billets, TMT bars and wire rods in this fiscal. The diversification of its product portfolio is expected to shore up NINL's financial health.

The company's focus now is to maximise output of steel billets to cater to special applications. NINL, already a dominant player in pig iron trade, intends to tap the export market for billets.

NINL's production figures in the months of May and June have shown a tendency to inch closer to realising its full rated capacity. In this period, the steel company has logged 29.65 per cent growth over the corresponding period of last fiscal. 

NINL recorded the highest ever monthly production at its Kalinga Nagar plant since inception in June 2018.

The company registered 74960 tonnes of hot metal and 69780 tonnes pig iron which is best monthly production figures of the company since its inception in 2002. The company's earlier best hot metal production was 70330 tonnes achieved in March, 2010 whereas best pig iron production was 64513 tonnes achieved in December, 2009. 

Apart from MMTC which owns 49.78 per cent equity in NINL, two Odisha government PSUs- Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) and Industrial Promotion & Investment Corporation of Odisha Ltd (Ipicol) have stakes in the steel project. NINL's current product portfolio comprises steel billets, pig iron and LAM (low ash metallurgical) coke along with nut coke, coke breeze, crude tar, ammonium sulphate and granulated slag.

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