Boom in business
Ranchi, Feb. 20: Japan’s Tokyo Boeki Development Limited has proposed an investment of $0.5 billion in the state for setting up two joint venture plants that would mainly use low grade iron ore to make nuggets.
The investment would be part of a total $2 billion investment proposed in the country by the Japan-based company.
Takeshi Ue, the president and CEO of Tokyo Boeki group, told The Telegraph that they were exploring the possibilities of setting up about 15 nugget plants in India through joint ventures.
“At present, we have zeroed in on Karnataka and Jharkhand for setting up such plants. Procuring iron ore from India, and for that matter Jharkhand, has always been our area of interest. But now, with plans to set up units here, we can ensure using low and high grade iron ore for local consumption,” said Takeshi.
Takeshi and Toao Kitahara, the general manager of the company, were invited by Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI) to take part in an important seminar in Ranchi recently.
The seminar mainly focused on the future use of low grade iron ore and Tokyo Boeki and Kobe Steel Limited have expertise in these.
The representative of Kobe Steel Limited, Takuyo Negami, even presented a paper on innovative ITmk 3 technology for economical utilisation of fine (low grade) iron ore.
The foreign company would have advantage over their Indian counterparts in using low grade (less then 63 per cent iron content) iron ore due to advanced technology. In India, only six small steel units use low grade iron ore for steel manufacturing, said experts.
“For us, an iron-content between 60-62 per cent is enough. Through latest technologies we can turn the content up to 97 per cent,” said Japanese delegates.
At present, the Indian steel industry normally uses high grade iron ore for steel production. Moderate and low grade iron ores are either treated as waste or are exported to countries like China and Japan.