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Rio Tinto Sends Steel Plant to China
A Rio Tinto steel plant in Australia is being dismantled and sent to China and not to India as was previously planned.
Jindal Steel and Power in Orissa had signed an agreement with Rio Tinto in 2011 for the HIsmelt plant in Kwinana, Australia, to be shipped to JSPL’s facility at Angul.
“The Chinese company Molong appeared to have a more urgent need for the technology,” Nik Senapati, managing director of Rio Tinto India, said in an emailed statement to Livemint. “The HIsmelt equipment in Australia is presently being deconstructed by a demolition company, some of which will be shipped to China later this year.” Chinese steelmaker Molong will receive the equipment and build a small pilot project.
HIsmelt is Rio Tinto’s proprietary technology to make iron straight from iron ore. The technology smelts iron ore fines directly using non-coking coals, which reduces emissions and saves cost in the steelmaking process.
Further, JSPL officials said bringing the plant to India involved making “too many changes.” Instead, JSPL, Molong and Rio Tinto have formed a joint venture. Molong will construct the 1- to 1.5 million tonne-per-annum-capacity pilot plant using Rio Tinto’s recycled equipment. The plant will begin production in 2014.
In 2015, JSPL will build a 12.5-new plant based on the results of the pilot. It will be located in Orissa at Angul as originally planned. Production is scheduled to begin at the Orissa facility in 2016.