The prevailing economic slowdown has no impact on the zinc market and the current inventory is not more than five days, which is a multi-year low, a top executive has said.
"As far as zinc projects are concerned, not many mines are there in the pipeline. If we look at zinc finished good production and the mine supply, there is still a million tonne gap between what is required by the smelters and what is fed by the mines,” CEO of Hindustan Zinc Sunil Duggal told CNBC-TV18.
Speaking about investment in India and expansion plans, Duggal said: “We have been expanding right from the time the company was disinvested by the government. We have spent around $4 billion since then. We expanded from a meagre 200,000-tonne capacity to a million tonnes wherein the major part used to come from opencast mine at Rampura Agucha. Since then we have also taken up a project of transitioning to underground mining and ramping up to 1.2 million tonnes. This project was about a little more than $2 billion which is going to get completed this year and we will have a production capacity of 1.2 million tonnes.”
Hindustan Zinc is not affected by the slowdown. "We meet 85 percent of the domestic demand. We have not felt any decline in demand from steel or auto industry. We also produce lead, lead we have always been shortage. We sell 100 percent of the lead we produce in the country itself and we produce silver which meets 10 percent of India’s demand. We are not seeing any impact on our balance sheet,” Duggal noted.