Hindustan Copper Limited and the Rajasthan Government propose to start joint ventures to explore and exploit copper and other mineral deposits in the State. The initiative is part of Hindustan Copper Limited's plan to consolidate its mining business, especially in Rajasthan.

The company is planning to execute as many as eight mining projects across the country at an estimated capital expenditure of Rs.3,435 crore to quadruple its mining capacity over the next five years, said Hindustan Copper Limited Chairman & Managing Director Shakeel Ahmed during a visit to the Khetri Copper Complex in Jhunjhunu district in Rajasthan over the weekend.

It is the only copper mining company in India.

The Khetri copper belt, situated on the foothills of the Aravallis along the 80-km metallogenetic province from Singhana in the north to Raghunathgarh in the south, has prominent copper deposits at Khetri, Kolihan, Banwas, Chandmari, Dhani Basri and in Baniwali Ki Dhani (at Neem Ka Thana in Sikar district). Devlalai in Bhilwara district, Akwali and Muradpura-Pacheri in Jhunjhunu also have sizeable copper ore presence.

The proposed expansion will be in Khetri and Kolihan mines with an investment of Rs.538 crore. Along with Khetri and Kolihan, the proposed development of Banwas deposit is expected to increase ore production from 1.0 million tonne to 3.1 million tonne per annum. Work on the Banwas and Khetri projects has already begun and tender for Kolihan expansion is under processing, informed Mr. Ahmed.

Mr. Ahmed said the company has been pursuing for some time with the Rajasthan Government for prospecting licences at 11 locations in the State. In fact, the State Government had granted such a licence for one of the areas, Baniwali-Ki-Dhani, but the lease deal could not be signed due to the existing Supreme Court ban on mining in the Aravalli ranges.

This past December Hindustan Copper Limited awarded five contracts to a consortium — which includes three Chinese companies — to raise its production four-fold to 12 million tonnes over the next five years. It is being pointed out that Chinese companies are being entrusted with the work of copper mines in India for the first time.

  • Company planning eight projects across India at estimated expenditure of Rs.3,435 crore

  • Hindustan Copper Limited is the only copper mining company in the country