KIOCL seeks Centre's help to regain glory

KIOCL seeks Centre's help to regain glory

KIOCL seeks Centre's help to regain glory

State-run pellet maker KIOCL Ltd has sought Steel Minister Narendra Singh Tomar's assistance in areas such as capacity expansion and foray into new segments to help rejuvenate the firm.

In a recent meeting with the minister, company Managing Director Malay Chatterjee "stressed upon specific issues connected to KIOCL" and sought assistance for rejuvenation, the Bangalore-based PSU said in a statement on Friday.

"The company is now operating with only vertical, pellet plant, with the iron ore sourced from NMDC though it had other verticals such as mining, beneficiation and blast furnace unit with operational profits on year-on-year basis," it said.

The iron ore mining operation of KIOCL, earlier known as Kudremukh Iron Ore Company, was stopped since 2005 following a Supreme Court order. It now depends on NMDC for iron ore to run its pellet plant in Mangalore and is operating the plant with "very thin margins".

KIOCL is planning to raise its pellet production to 10-14 million tonnes (MT) from 3.5 MT now through a series of joint ventures with government-owned firms in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.

It is also geared up for opening its new vertical in the operation and maintenance for better utilisation of manpower and expertise. It has already received orders from NMDC.

The company statement said Chatterjee has sought Tomar's patronage and intervention with a view to achieve capacity expansion and diversification.

KIOCL, which is exploring ways to restart pellets after a gap of three years, is also pursuing international avenues by entering into conversion contract with Iran and other West Asian countries.

Chatterjee also asked the minister to consider allocating mining leases pending with various governments and give a captive mine on an urgent basis to help rejuvenate the firm.