India: BRPL Raises Pellet Production by Around 25-30% - Sources
Mining News Pro - Leading manufacturer of iron pellets Brahmani River Pellets Ltd (BRPL) has lately achieved more than 25-30 percent rise in output at its plant in Odisha, according to sources.


BRPL, co-owned by Thriveni Pellets Pvt Ltd and JSW Techno Projects Ltd, is reported to be producing 10,000 tonnes of pellets each day, bettering its previous normative run rate of 7500 tonnes.

Following the change in ownership structure, BRPL is looking at revamping and redesigning of its plant. Though the pellet complex has a nameplate capacity of four million tonnes per annum (mtpa), it was barely producing 2-2.5 mtpa. The under capacity utilization was primarily due to non-availability of iron ore fines at competitive rates and lackluster demand for pellets, especially in the domestic market. Pellet, an intermediate product directly competes with iron ore lumps. Since the price of lumps was comparatively cheaper than iron ore pellets, steel producers preferred to buy the former. This is despite pellet being a cleaner feed to the blast furnaces.

But, of late, there has been a steady demand for pellets from the overseas buyers. BRPL cashing in on the demand has despatched a few trial pellet consignments to Japan, Malaysia, and some European markets. BRPL is now seriously looking beyond China as an export destination for pellets. In the domestic steel market, the pellet maker has been supplying to Tata Steel and Bhushan Steel Ltd.

Both Thriveni Pellets Ltd and JSW Group firm JSW Techno Projects Ltd have acquired 49 percent equity each in BRPL. The residual two percent stake has been taken over by Bengaluru-based mid-scale steel maker Mitsun Steels Pvt Ltd. BRPL has already signed share purchase agreements with the three companies on December 15last year. The share sale transaction has been okayed by the Competition Commission of India. The Odisha government, too, has approved the change in ownership structure of BRPL.

Last fiscal, BRPL operated at barely 60 percent of its nameplate capacity of four million tonnes per annum. The new promoters are making frenzied attempts to scale up capacity utilization to full 100 percent. Their focus is now on upgrading the quality of products churned by the plant.

BRPL operates a four million tonnes per annum (mtpa) pellet plant at Jajpur in the eastern state of Odisha, 4.7 mtpa iron ore beneficiation unit at Barbil along with a 230-km slurry pipeline connecting the two units, all in the same state.

BRPL increased pellet exports sharply- According to customs data maintained with SteelMint, BRPL exported 0.28 MnT pellets in Jul`18 compared to 0.23 MnT in June`18.

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