Adani's $ 1.2 bn copper smelter imports from Peru, Chile, Australia

01 Mar 2024

Gautam Adani's group, an Indian billionaire, is set to initiate its $ 1.2 billion copper smelter project, which is the largest single-location plant of its kind globally, according to a senior company official. The copper concentrates necessary for this venture will be sourced from Peru, Chile, and Australia.

Kutch Copper (KCL), a subsidiary of Adani Enterprises, anticipates commencing its operations in the coming weeks. The plant, situated in Mundra, Gujarat state, will initially have a capacity of 500,000 metric tons, with plans to expand to 1 million metric tons by 2028/29.

Vinay Prakash, the managing director of KCL, revealed in an interview with Reuters that the company is open to acquiring copper assets both in India and abroad, although specific details were not provided. Importantly, KCL will be importing copper concentrates from global miners and international traders.

Prakash explained, "The sourcing involves a strategic mix of short and long-term arrangements with miners and traders worldwide, including Peru, Chile, and Australia."

He emphasised that the copper smelter will contribute to enhancing domestic supplies of the metal, considering the robust demand for copper in India, driven by the construction, transport, and power sectors.

India's copper imports have surged, particularly since the closure of Vedanta's Sterlite Copper smelter in 2018, which produced approximately 400,000 metric tonne of copper. During the first nine months of the fiscal year starting in April, India imported copper ore and concentrate worth $ 2.2 billion from various countries, including Peru, Chile, Australia, and Indonesia.

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