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Vedanta Resources (VED)

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Tuesday 14 October, 2008

Vedanta Resources

2nd Quarter Production Result

RNS Number : 7455F
Vedanta Resources PLC
14 October 2008
 



 


Vedanta Resources plc

Production Report for the Second Quarter and

Six Months Ended 30 September 2008


Highlights


  • Highest ever production volumes of aluminium, zinc and iron ore in the half-year

  • Lanjigarh bauxite mining project cleared by the Honourable Supreme Court of India (the 'Supreme Court')

  • Commissioning of first phase of new Jharsuguda aluminium smelter progressing well; second power unit commissioned

  • New Nchanga copper smelter project at KCM under commissioning

  • All other expansion projects progressing on schedule


Aluminium 


The production of 206,000 tonnes in the half year ended 30 September 2008 ('H1') was the highest ever for any six month reporting period.  Aluminium production in the quarter ended 30 September 2008 ('Q2') was 106,000 tonnes, a 7% increase over the corresponding prior quarter due to a 7,000 tonne contribution from the new Jharsuguda aluminium smelter. Our aluminium smelters at Korba and Mettur continue to operate at their rated capacities.


The first stream of the alumina refinery at Lanjigarh is fully operational, using bauxite supplies from both BALCO and third parties. Calcined alumina output at Lanjigarh was 250,000 tonnes in H1 and 114,000 tonnes during Q2 and is sufficient to meet our current internal requirements at BALCO and Jharsuguda.


On 8 August 2008, the Supreme Court cleared the bauxite mining project at Lanjigarh, Orissa. We expect to start feeding the refinery with our own Niyamgiri bauxite production by mid CY 2009.


Work on the first phase of the 500,000 tpa aluminium smelter and associated captive power plant at Jharsuguda, Orissa is progressing well and as at 30 September 2008, 76 pots had been brought in line supported by the first unit of the captive power plant.  Additionally, the second unit of the captive power plant has been recently commissioned.  We will progressively commission Phase I of the aluminium smelter and expect it to achieve its capacity of 250,000 tonnes per annum by end of this fiscal year.



Copper ― India and Australia 


Total cathode production of 149,000 tonnes in H1 was 13% lower compared with the corresponding period last year primarily on account of a planned 26 day maintenance shutdown in the first quarter.  The copper smelter at Tuticorin produced 81,000 tonnes of cathode in Q2, a 11decrease over the corresponding prior quarter primarily due to stabilisation issues faced during post-shutdown ramp up, which have now been resolved.


We continue to improve plant efficiencies with copper recovery in excess of 98% and efficient by-product management. These factors contribute significantly to the profitability of this business.


Mined metal production at our Australian mine was 12,000 tonnes during H1, lower by about 3,000 tonnes compared with the corresponding period in the previous year. This was primarily due to an unscheduled 20-day shutdown of the processing plant in Q2 to make structural repairs and reinforcements.  The processing plant is now fully operational.



Copper ― Zambia 


Production of 73,000 tonnes of copper cathode in H1 was about 8% lower than the corresponding period last year due to lower copper grade in the ore mined and on account of organic contamination at the tailings leach plant. Smelter production in H1 was higher than the corresponding prior year period.  KCM produced 37,000 tonnes of copper cathode in Q2, a modest increase over the first quarter. We produced 21,000 tonnes of mined metal in Q2, in line with the corresponding period last year.


The new Nchanga smelter and a new concentrator at Konkola are mechanically complete and commissioning activities have started. Further work on the KDMP expansion project is progressing well with the sinking of main shaft on course for mid-shaft commissioning by mid FY 2010.



Zinc and Lead


Mined metal production at 305,000 tonnes during H1 was highest ever reported in any six month reporting period. Mined metal production in Q2 was 167,000 tonnes, the highest reported in any quarter and up 17compared with the corresponding period last year. Higher H1 and Q2 production has been the result of the successful commissioning and ramp-up of the stream III concentrator at Rampura Agucha.


Refined zinc production was a record 249,000 tonnes in H1, an increase of 33% compared with the corresponding prior period.  Refined zinc production in Q2 was 122,000 tonnes.  As previously disclosed, the Chanderiya pyro smelter was shut down for planned maintenance for 50 days in Q2.  The smelter is now operating at normal production levels.


Refined lead production was 30,000 tonnes in H1, an increase of 11% compared with the corresponding prior period. Refined lead production in Q2 was 13,000 tonnes.  


Sales in Q2 was augmented by sales of 76,000 dry metric tonnes of surplus zinc concentrate and 21,000 dry metric tonnes of surplus lead concentrate.

  

Iron Ore


The saleable ore produced during H1 was at a record 7.1 million tonnes, an increase of 50% and the highest ever for any six month reporting period Production in Q2 was 2.6 million tonnes or an increase of 39% compared with the corresponding prior quarter.  As usual, Q2 production was impacted by the monsoon.



Commercial Energy


Work on 2,400 MW (4x600 MW) coal based Independent thermal power plant at Jharsuguda is progressing well and overall the project is on schedule for progressive commissioning from late 2009 as expected.


We have taken possession of land from the Government of Punjab for the 1,980 MW coal based thermal power plant at Talwandi Sabo in the State of Punjab, India and have commenced engineering and procurement activities.



Production Summary (Unaudited)

                                                                                                                                                    ( i'000 tonnes, except as stated)


Half year ended 30 September

Quarter ended 30 September

Particulars

2008

2007 

Change

2008

2007

Change

Alumina







  Korba/Mettur

143

145

(1.4%)

70

74

(5.4%)

  Lanjigarh

250

28

792.9%

114

28

307.1%

Aluminium

206

196

5.1%

106

99

7.1%

Copper India / Australia







  Mined metal content

12

15

(20.0%)

6

8

(25.0%)

  Cathodes 

149

172

(13.4%)

81

91

(11.0%)

  Rods

110

107

2.8%

58

56

3.6%

Copper - Zambia







  Mined metal content

42

41

2.4%

21

21

-

  Cathodes 

73

79

(7.6%)

37

40

(7.5%)

Zinc and Lead







  Mined metal content

305

278

9.7%

167

143

16.8%

  Refined zinc metal

249

187

33.2%

122

94

29.8%

  Refined lead metal

30

27

11.1%

13

13

Iron Ore 1  







Saleable Ore 2  (kt)

7,127

3,782

NA

2,562

1,848

38.6%

 

1.  Represents production in post acquisition period of 5 months to 30 September 2007, and are not directly comparable with the current period

2.  Iron ore is reported on wet tonnes basis

  

   For further information, please contact:

Sumanth Cidambi

Director - Investor Relations

Vedanta Resources plc


sumanth.cidambi@vedanta.co.in

Tel: +44 20 7659 4732 / +91 22 6646 1531


Faeth Birch

Robin Walker

Finsbury


Tel:  +44 20 7251 3801


About Vedanta Resources plc

Vedanta Resources plc ('Vedanta') is a London listed FTSE 100 diversified metals and mining major. The group produces aluminium, copper, zinc, lead, iron ore and commercial energy. Vedanta has operations in India, Zambia and Australia and a strong organic growth pipeline of projects. With an empowered talent pool of 29,000 employees globally, Vedanta places strong emphasis on partnering with all its stakeholders based on the core values of entrepreneurship, excellence, trust, inclusiveness and growth. For more information visit www.vedantaresources.com


Disclaimer

This press release contains 'forward-looking statements' - that is, statements related to future, not past, events. In this context, forward-looking statements often address our expected future business and financial performance, and often contain words such as 'expects,' 'anticipates,' 'intends,' 'plans,' 'believes,' 'seeks,' 'should' or 'will.' Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain. For us, uncertainties arise from the behaviour of financial and metals markets including the London Metal Exchange, fluctuations in interest and or exchange rates and metal prices; from future integration of acquired businesses; and from numerous other matters of national, regional and global scale, including those of a political, economic, business, competitive or regulatory nature. These uncertainties may cause our actual future results to be materially different that those expressed in our forward-looking statements. We do not undertake to update our forward-looking statements.



This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange
 
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