21 May 2024 13:12

Acron puts cost of completing potash mine at $1.6 bln

MOSCOW. May 21 (Interfax) - Acron , one of Russia's largest fertilizer producers, estimates that $1.6 billion in capital expenditures will be needed to complete the Talitsky potash project, the company said in its annual report.

"Capex required to complete the project (for 2 mtpa capacity) is estimated at $1.6 bln. The Group has already spent about $500 mln in capex, not including the cost of the license," Acron said.

Acron again updated the timeframe for the project last year and production of potassium chloride at the Talitsky mine is scheduled to start in 2026 and it is expected to reach design capacity in 2029.

The company spent $246 million on the project in 2023, completing the sinking and equipment of vertical shafts and starting construction on the mine's surface facilities, processing plant, tailings dump, auxiliary shops and external infrastructure.

Acron subsidiary Verkhnekamsk Potash Company (VPC) secured the license to the Talitsky section of the Verkhnekamsk potassium and magnesium salts deposit in Perm Territory in 2008. The project was later joined by banks and at the end of 2023 Acron owned 50% plus one share in VPC, Sberbank held 29.9%, state bank VTB owned 10% and Otkritie held 10.1%, but in the first quarter of 2024 Acron bought out 30% of VPC shares from its partner banks, increasing its stake to 80%.

The Talitsky mine will have design capacity to produce 2 million tonnes of potassium chloride per year and there are plans to expand to 2.6 million tonnes. Acron itself needs 600,000 tonnes of potash per year.