Companies

Relief for Sesa as Goa eases ban on ore transport

| Updated on: Jul 25, 2012

Sesa Goa, a Vedanta Group company, has received a respite with regard to the ban on iron ore transportation in Goa.

Mr P.K. Mukherjee, Managing Director, Sesa Goa said the ban was lifted on Tuesday, but there were various clauses in the order which created ambiguity.

“We are in dialogue with the concerned officials to seek clarity. If things fall in place, we will produce 500,000 tonnes of pig iron this fiscal, generating revenue of about Rs 200 crore,” he said.

Last month, the District Collector had banned the movement of iron ore from the Goa mines to avoid accidents during the monsoon. The industry had protested and filed a writ petition in the High Court.

After considering the representation by various stakeholders, the District Collector issued an order allowing the movement of mining trucks through a specific route initially for 15 days. The ban still continues on the other two routes used by mining companies.

Sesa Goa has been told to transport ore on alternative days, starting Monday, while the others can move the raw material during the rest of the week. The movement of trucks will be controlled by an issue of electronic tokens at the mine gate. While no trucks will be allowed to ply before 9 am, vehicular movement is banned from 12 noon to 2 pm.

Sesa Goa operates iron ore mines at Codli in South Goa and has pig iron and metallurgical coke plants at Amona in Bicholim taluka in North Goa. Production of iron ore, pig iron and met coke by the company fell sharply in the June quarter.

Sesa Goa expects to restart mining in Karnataka in the next couple of months. It has already submitted a detailed proposal to the Indian Bureau of Mines and is awaiting approval.

Earlier this month, the Karnataka Government recommended to the Central Empowered Committee that work on eight iron ore mines be resumed. This includes the Sesa Goa mine, which falls under the ‘B’ category. Early next month, the Supreme Court is to take up the case on the Karnataka iron ore ban.

“If granted permission, we will start production in the next couple of months,” said Mr Mukherjee.

Iron ore prices in the international markets have fallen sharply in the last few months due to the drop in demand from China.

“I do not see iron ore prices falling any further. The demand in India still remains strong. In fact, some of the steel-making units in Karnataka have cut production due to shortfall in iron ore supply,” said Mr Mukherjee.

The company shares were down two per cent at Rs 183 on Wednesday.

> suresh.iyengar@thehindu.co.in

Published on March 12, 2018

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