State-run Hindustan Copper (HCL) is all set to invest Rs 2,200 crore in a new project to extract copper using a technology that is being tried out on a commercial scale for the first time globally.
The project is part of the Rs 6,000 crore capital expenditure that HCL—believed to be India’s largest integrated copper producer has planned through FY2021-22. Once complete, it will boost HCL’s current 31,000 tonne cathode capacity by nearly threefold.
The project will involve hydro metallurgy, a method for obtaining metals from their ores through leaching. The technology will facilitate extraction of copper from sulphide ores prevalent in the country.
After the company’s board meeting, KD Diwan, Chairman, told reporters, “We hope to produce 1 lakh tonnes of copper cathode from this new project every year. With copper demand in India set to grow 8-9% annually, we hope to be able to add new capacity in tune with market growth. “We hope to get government approval for the project within the next six months,” he said.