India plans $3 billion aluminum smelter in Iran
India plans a $3 billion aluminum smelter complex in Iran, now that nuclear negotiations between Tehran and the P5+1 countries have concluded, media reports say.
The idea was mooted in 2014 but India had been cooling its heels for the removal of sanctions on Iran to go ahead with the plan.
India’s National Aluminium Co. is now reportedly giving a serious consideration to the project after Iran and the P5+1 finalized their negotiations. It includes construction of a smelter to produce 500,000 metric tons of aluminum per year and a 1,000-megawatt captive power plant.
India’s coal stock is not sufficient to power its aluminum production and since imports of coal are not viable, the country has to look for reserves and build a plant abroad.
Iran is using a mix of sources for power generation, including hydroelectric stations, oil products and natural gas.
With a lingering drought having drained dams and oil products polluting the environment, the country is switching to gas-powered electricity. Last year, Iran fed 50 billion cubic meters of gas into its power plants, up from 36 billion cubic meters.
The country is viewed an ideal destination for aluminum production because of its power generation capacities, given that electricity accounts for 40% of smelting.