By Etuka Sunday with agency report
The National Iron Ore Mining Company (NIOMCO), Itakpe, Kogi, said no less than 2.13 million tonnes of iron ore were required by Ajaokuta Steel Company to enable it to begin production.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Sole Administrator of NIOMCO, Malam Abubakar Ibrahim, stated this yesterday at Itekpe, while receiving the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr. Musa Sada.
The sole administrator said, at that level of production, their in-house study has shown that the operating cost per tonne shall be about N7, 000, which translates to N14.910 billion.
Ibrahim said that with that quantity of iron ore, the steel company would be able to produce 1.3 million tonnes of steel annually.
He, however, said that for NIOMCO to meet the iron ore need of the steel company’s first phase production, it would need to produce and process seven million tonnes of raw iron ore annually.
He said when on stream with necessary facilities, the company could produce about 36,000 tonnes of iron ore concentrates per month.
“At that level of production, our in-house study has shown that the operating cost per tonne shall be about N7,000.
“This means that a net monthly operating income of about N228 million shall be realised, taking current world market concentrate price of N16,000 per tonne’’, he said.
In his remark, the minister said that the federal government was doing everything possible to see that NIOMCO resumed production.
Sada said the National Industrial Revolution Plan, recently launched by the government, would address the challenges of the company and help it meet its mandate.