Anrak, Balco, and Hindalco Vie For Bauxite Auctioned by Odisha Mining Corporation

Interest in Odisha Mining Corporation’s (OMC) first-ever attempt at auctioning bauxite met with considerable interest from several of India’s major aluminium players last week.

The company’s initial foray into a bauxite auction was the online offering of 190 thousand metric tons of bauxite ore harvested from the firm’s captive lease near Kodingamali in Odisha, on India’s east coast.

R. Vineel Krishna, OMC’s managing director, detailed the parties who showed the most interest in the offered ore.

“We have received the participation of BALCO (Bharat Aluminium Company), Hindalco for its units at Muri and Belgaum and Anrak Aluminium at the bauxite e-auctions. As per the policy finalized, 30 per cent of our saleable bauxite would be liquidated through auctions.”

Anrak Aluminium has courted the idea of buying bauxite ore from OMC before, as the firm, which is a joint venture between Penna Group and Ras-Al-Khaimah Investment Authority, is searching for new sources of the ore. Anrak’s search continues to take on ever greater urgency as the firm watches the bauxite ore supply in its own region dwindle.

Anrak’s interest in the auction is of little shock to India’s aluminium industry watchers. The firm established a 1.5-million-metric-ton alumina refinery relying on a long-term, steady supply of bauxite ore from Andhra Pradesh Mineral Development Corporation (APMDC), with whom it negotiated a deal for the latter to provide 224 million metric tons of the ore to Anrak’s refinery each year. Though the deal was inked and the finishing touches were put on Anrak’s refinery in 2013, APMDC has yet to supply the refinery with the agreed-upon bauxite ore, to the obvious chagrin of Anrak’s brass.

The auction last week was among the 30 percent of OMC’s supply intended for sale to the highest bidder. The balance of OMC’s production is slated to be ported out to third parties via long-term linkage. At the moment, Vedanta is the likely recipient of the lion’s share of such deals, as Nalco and Hindalco both receive most of their bauxite needs from captive bauxite sources.



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