Copper production in India


Copper production in India is only about 0.2 per cent of world production in view of its potential reserve limited to 60,000 km2 (2% of world reserve) of which 20,000 km2 area has been topic to exploration, as of 2012. But in the manufacture, it is still within the first twenty countries of the world and also one of its major importers in line with China, Japan, South Korea and Germany.

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As of April 2005 review by the Indian Bureau of Mines the full reserve has been estimated as 1394.42 million tonnes out of which 369.49 million tonnes (26.5%) is considered as “reserves” (under “proved and probable categories”) The balance 1024.93 million tonnes is named under “remaining resources” (to be confirmed by studies and measurements).

In India mining of copper historically is more than 2000 yrs old. But its production to happen industrial demand is noted from the middle of the 1960’s.

In India, copper ore has been known in varying structural formations as “hot rocks” in several geological formations of different geological timescale.

The resource has been known and discovered to varying degree in 14 states of the country such as Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Orissa, Rajasthan, Sikkim, and West Bengal.

Mining is finished by both opencast and underground approaches. The major copper mines are Singhbhum copper belt in Jharkhand Malanjkhand copper belt in Madhya Pradesh and the Khetri copper belt in Rajasthan which are mined by HCL; Singhbhum belt is mined by M/s Indian Copper Complex. And the Ingeldhal mine is worked by M/s Hutti Gold Mines Ltd, the Dikchu mine is in Sikkim below the Sikkim Mining Corporation (SMC).

Mining making is just 0.2 per cent of the world’s production, while refined copper production is around 4% of the world’s production.

In 2011, Ministry of Mines said India exported refined copper, which was initially finished excursively by the mines owned by Hindustan Copper Ltd (incorporated as Indian Copper Corporation Ltd. in 1972) since 1967, a Government of India responsibility. Now there are three more producers in this field such as Sterlite Industries Ltd  Jagadia Copper Ltd and Hindalco Industries Ltd.

However, HCL is the dominant industry which has a wide range of production capability in mining, beneficiation, smelting, refining and continuous cast rod manufacturing.

Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Jharkhand are the only states involved in the production of copper ore in the country. However, copper focusses are imported by the Birla copper of Hindalco Industries Limited and Sterlite Industries Limited to produce copper metal situated in the States of Gujarat and Tamil Nadu, respectively.

Global ranking is fourth in smelter production and eighth in refined copper consumption.


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