9 Nov 2023 13:03

Kazakhstan to launch large-scale metals projects

ASTANA. Nov 9 (Interfax) - Industry and Construction Minister Kanat Sharlapyaev has unveiled a plan to boost investment in Kazakhstan's metals and manufacturing sectors with 20 large-scale projects set for launch.

"A strategic pool of investment projects includes roughly 20 ventures focusing on metal processing, heavy engineering, automotive components, and fertilizers," Sharlapyaev said on Thursday at the plenary meeting of the Senate.

The Sharlapyaev mentioned that, "A project in ferrous metals entails the production of hot briquetted iron, with an investment of approximately 920 billion tenge (around $1.9 billion)." The facility in Rudny is projected to process 2 million tonnes of iron annually, advancing iron ore processing and supplying essential materials to local steelmakers.

The Energy Ministry and QazaqGaz are discussing the construction of a gas pipeline from Aktobe to Rudny, because natural gas is essential for producing hot briquetted iron.

"An electrometallurgical plant is another project, with investment of $262 million and anticipated output of 1.2 million tonnes of specialty steels annually, aiming to support 80% of domestic needs, especially in railway engineering," the minister said. The country's steel production is expected to grow 25% following the plant's launch, bringing the total output up from 4.2 million tonnes to 5.4 million tonnes.

A new copper smelter with investment of around 600 billion tenge is designed to produce cathode copper primarily for export to China.

"The copper cathode project in Kazakhstan aims for in-country processing of copper raw materials with annual capacity of 300,000 tonnes. The plan includes exporting 99% of output to China, while selling gold bullion and sulfuric acid locally. This initiative is set to rank Kazakhstan among the world's top five copper producers, alongside China, Japan, Chile, and Russia," the minister said.

The official exchange rate as on November 9, 2023, is 466.79 tenge/$1.