Indonesia’s Antam to start building new nickel smelter, HPAL plant in 2025 – ET Auto

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“We all want ‘green nickel’ for this project because all consumers now demanded that the ESG aspects are fulfilled,” he added.

Indonesian state-controlled miner Aneka Tambang (Antam) aims to launch the construction of two nickel processing facilities next year under its partnership with China’s Ningbo Contemporary Brunp Lygend Ltd (CBL).

The projects are part of Antam’s deal with CBL to develop an “ecosystem” to produce materials used in batteries for electric vehicles (EV), and part of Indonesia’s bigger ambition to set up itself as a production hub for EVs.

Antam and CBL concluded the first stage of the deal in December, through sales of shares in two of Antam’s nickel mining units to CBL.

This year, the companies involved are conducting feasibility studies for a rotary klin electric furnace (RKEF) plant to process nickel into crude metal and a high-pressure acid leach (HPAL) plant to extract the material used in EV batteries from nickel ores.

“Next year, at the industrial park, we must (start) building the RKEF and HPAL plants,” Nicolas Kanter, chief executive of Antam told reporters late on Monday. He did not give a specific location but Antam said in a statement last year it plans to develop the park in East Halmahera regency in North Maluku province.

Among the items in the feasibility studies are the possibility of using natural gas to power the HPAL plant. Most nickel processing facilities in Indonesia are currently powered by coal.

“We are looking into using gas power for the HPAL plant, but the feasibility study is needed to make sure the economic viability of the project is not significantly impacted,” Kanter said.

“We all want ‘green nickel’ for this project because all consumers now demanded that the ESG aspects are fulfilled,” he added.

Joint-venture units will be set up for each the RKEF and HPAL plants, he added.

  • Published On Mar 26, 2024 at 01:21 PM IST

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