Taking one more step ahead in setting up alumina and smelter plant project in joint venture with National Aluminium Company (Nalco), state-run mining major Gujarat Mineral Development Corporation (GMDC) has sought around 1,500 acres of land in Mandvi taluka of Kutch district. Aluminium smelting is the process of extracting aluminium from alumina.
"We have demanded 1,500 acres of land from Gujarat government and we are awaiting government's response," said a senior company official.
GMDC has 26% equity in this JV and will supply bauxite for the project. "Nalco is currently preparing a project report, which is likely to be completed by March next year," the official added.
Both the joint venture partners are likely to ink the final project agreement over the next two to three weeks. "Nalco has asked for some changes in the agreement. A final project agreement will be signed between the two companies over the next two-three weeks. We have already identified 1500 acres land near Mandvi in Kutch," confirmed a top GMDC official.
The fuel supply agreement will be signed after the singing of the final project agreement. GMDC will supply about 3 million tonnes of bauxite for the project.
Nalco has qualified as the sole bidder for Rs 12,000 crore alumina and smelter plant project in Kutch district and has deposited upfront fees of Rs 150 crore for the project. The bids for the project were technically examined by the Nagpur-based Jawaharlal Nehru Aluminium Research Development and Design Centre.
The project is for one million tonne alumina and 0.5 million tonne aluminium smelter. The alumina and smelter project is expected to be set up on the lines of such units being installed by the UK-based Vedanta group in Odhisa, but with more sophisticated technology.
Gujarat government had signed an MoU with Aashapura Group in 2005 to set up the plant and smelter unit in Kutch but later the government did not extend the MoU, following which GMDC in 2010 had invited EOIs for the project.