Business

Sterlite unit shutdown led to Rs 20k-cr loss to economy: CEO

The closure resulted in steep rise in prices of sulphuric acid and phosphoric acid.

New Delhi: The closure of Vedanta’s Sterlite Copper unit in Tamil Nadu has led to rise in import of copper worth $2 billion and export loss of over $1.5 billion, resulting in an overall loss of Rs 20,000 crore to the economy, a top company official said on Tuesday.

The statement comes amid National Green Tribunal(NGT) refusing to grant any interim relief to Vedanta, which has challenged Tamil Nadu government’s order to permanently shut down the unit. The state government had in May ordered the pollution control board to seal and permanently close the plant, following violent protests over pollution concerns.

“Closure of Sterlite Copper has resulted in increased import of copper worth USD 2 billion and export loss of over USD 1.5 billion, overall loss of Rs20,000 crore to the economy,” Sterlite Copper CEO P Ramnath said.

He said, before the closure, the company was supplying 250,000 tonne per annum of copper to the domestic market and added that most of the customers have to import now.

Before the shutdown, the company exported around 150,000-160,000 tonne per annum of copper. The closure has also resulted in steep rise in prices of sulphuric acid and phosphoric acid.

Post-shutdown, prices of sulphuric acid have spiked from Rs 4,000 per tonne to Rs 15,000 per tons. “The price of phosphoric acid has also increased by 20-25 per cent,” he added.

In April, the state pollution control board had rejected Sterlite’s plea to renew the Consent To Operate certification, saying the company had not complied with the stipulated conditions. Following this, the government had issued a permanent closure notice to the plant.

Vedanta’s plea in NGT sought permission to operate the unit and a direction to declare as unlawful and illegal the exercise of powers by the state government in passing the closure order under section 18(1)(b) of the Water Act. Sterlite Copper had first made headlines in March, 2013, when a gas leak led to the death of one person.

Before shutdown the company exported 150,000-160,000 tons copper per annum.SC had ordered the company to pay Rs100 crore as compensation for polluting environment.

Vedanta Q1 profit at Rs1,533 cr

  • Metals and mining giant Vedanta Ltd posted nearly flat consolidated net profit at Rs 1,533 crore, up barely 2.13 per cent, for the first quarter ended June 30, 2018-19.
  • It had posted net profit of Rs 1,501 crore in the April-June period of 2017-18, Vedanta Ltd said in a filing to BSE.
  • The net profit is after taxes, non-controlling interests and share in profit of jointly controlled entities and associates but before exceptional items, it said.

 Offer to delist Vedanta from London Stock Exchange 

  • Mining mogul Anil Agarwal’s family trust has made a firm USD1 billion offer to buy 33.47 per cent non-promoter shares of Vedanta Resources in a deal that values the conglomerate at USD 3.07 billion.
  • “Under the terms of the offer, Vedanta shareholders will receive USD 10.89 per share in cash for each Vedanta share,” the company said in a regulatory filing detailing about the USD 1 billion offer.
  • In addition, the shareholders will be entitled to receive the dividend of USD 0.41 per share in respect of the 12 months ended March 31, 2018.
  • Vedanta had on July 2 announced Agarwal’s plans to delist the company.
  • Agarwal’s Volcan Investments, which holds 66.53% of Vedanta, made a cash offer for 825 pence a share. Vedanta owns copper, aluminum, iron ore and oil biz.
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