Russian miner Nornickel is implementing a project to create additional copper production in Monchegorsk, Murmansk region.
The new plant will increase the company’s copper production by 40%, it claims. However, its launch may be postponed from 2025 to 2027 due to adjustments caused by geopolitical changes. The project is part of the steel company’s strategy to modernize and replace obsolete facilities.
Total investment is slated to be more than RUB 140 billion ($2.57 billion) for the construction of the “white metallurgy” plant, Kallanish notes.
“Our goal is to create an advanced, highly efficient and environmentally friendly copper production facility in Monchegorsk,” says Nornickel’s senior vice president Sergey Dubovitsky after signing a relevant memorandum with the government of the Murmansk region during the St Petersburg Economic Forum. “The Big Copper project starts this year and provides for the use of modern technology – roasting, leaching, electro-extraction – with minimal environmental impact. Sulphur recovery into acid will be at least 99.5%, [and] the production will have a closed-loop water circulation system.”
Another important undertaking is the construction of a new department for the separation of matte at the Kola MMC, which involves the reconfiguration of refining facilities to increase the production of non-ferrous metals, Nornickel says.
Earlier, the company said it has no plans to leave Western markets after the Russian invasion in Ukraine and new Western sanctions again Russia. It has received permission from the Russian government to be listed abroad.
In 2022, the copper market is expected to be in a mild deficit of 82,000 t as global consumption will be growing on the back of further post-Covid global economic recoveries and increasing investments in renewable energy and transport electrification, it says.