Trimex Sands Private Limited (TSPL) will invest more than Rs. 2,000 crore for expansion of its activities in Srikakulam and Visakhapatnam districts despite a sluggish market for heavy minerals abroad.

China and Europe are the principal markets for heavy minerals like zircon, ilmenite, rutile and garnet, which are mostly used in the production of paint, paper, ceramics, abrasives, cosmetics, leather, glass, artificial gems and aircraft parts. The heavy mineral producers, however, are in a piquant state, thanks to a steep drop in demand following the introduction of export duty.

Describing the ongoing phase as a temporary phenomenon, TSPL managing director Koneru Pradeep expressed confidence that the heavy mineral industry would witness robust business in India and abroad.

Mr. Pradeep said TSPL would go for rapid expansion, as the company was expected to get environmental clearance for its new projects at Bhavanapadu.

It will also enhance the capacity of the existing plant at Vatsavalasa. “We have firmed up plans to invest around Rs. 650 crore exclusively on the processing unit at Atchutaparam in Visakhapatnam, as mere exports will not make business viable,” he added.

He requested the government to withdraw export duty, considering the fall in demand for heavy minerals in the country. “It will take several years for demand to pick up in the local market.

So, we have urged the government to safeguard the heavy mineral industry, which has been providing employment to fishermen and rural people in the north Andhra region,” he said.

“We want to make our business viable by setting up solar power plants, so that power will be available at relatively cheaper rate. We hope the government will reduce industrial tariff, as solar power cannot meet the entire power demand of the industry,” Mr. Pradeep added.

TSPL managing director Koneru Pradeep confident that heavy minerals industry will see robust activity in India and abroad.

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