10 April 2006
Aditya Birla Minerals is poised to become the fourth largest producer of copper in Australia with the commissioning of the Nifty sulphide operation. The production is expected to be 46 kt in FY 2006 and 106 kt in FY 2007. The Nifty sulphide operation, with an average life of mine head grade of approximately 2.8 per cent copper, is expected to be one of the richest underground copper operations in the world.
Aditya Birla Minerals, a subsidiary of Hindalco, is headquartered in Perth, Australia, and has mining and exploration activities focused at the Nifty copper mine in the Pilbara region, northwest Australia, and the Mt. Gordon copper mine in northwest Queensland, since 2003. The company is headed by Mr. Debu Bhattacharya, who is the non-executive chairman. Mr Sanjay Loyalka is the chief executive officer and managing director.
The company has also successfully completed a conversion project of cathode to concentrate at Mt. Gordon, which now enables the production of copper concentrate. The copper concentrate is used as a raw material by Hindalco, whose requirements are expected to grow substantially over the next few years, through a long-term contractual agreement. Aditya Birla Minerals will continue to benefit from being part of Hindalco and the Aditya Birla Group. It will have access to substantial international industry knowledge and networks as well as advisory support on technical, financial, risk management, legal and human resource aspects.
Aditya Birla Minerals is well positioned for the ongoing delivery of copper products into the growing Asian construction, electrical and industrial markets. The Asian region accounted for around 42 per cent of the world's copper consumption in 2005 and is expected to account for around 39 per cent of global consumption growth over the next five years.
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