Tag Archives: Tata Steel

Metal and mining companies collaborate with WEF on blockchain solutions

Seven leading mining and metals companies have partnered with the World Economic Forum (WEF) to experiment, design and deploy blockchain solutions that will accelerate responsible sourcing and sustainability practices, the WEF reports.

The Mining and Metals Blockchain Initiative will pool resources and cost, increase speed-to-market and improve industry-wide trust that cannot be achieved by acting individually, according to the forum.

“It aims to be a neutral enabler for the industry, addressing the lack of standardisation and improving efficiency,” WEF said, adding that the intention was to send out a signal of inclusivity and collaboration across the industry.

Among the seven companies represented in this initiative are Antofagasta Minerals, Eurasian Resources Group, Glencore, Tata Steel Limited, De Beers and Anglo American.

The group will look to develop joint proof-of-concepts for an inclusive blockchain platform, which, over time, could help the industry collectively increase “transparency, efficiency or improve reporting of carbon emissions”, it said.

The WEF explained: “In many cases, blockchain projects to support responsible sourcing have been bilateral. The result has been a fractured system that leaves behind parts of the ecosystem and lacks interoperability.”

The new initiative is owned and driven by the industry, for the industry, according to the WEF, with members examining issues related to governance, developing case studies and establishing a working group. Key areas of collaboration and development could include carbon emissions tracking and supply chain transparency.

“They will work to use blockchain technology to increase trust between upstream and downstream partners, to address the lack of industry standardisation and to track provenance, chain of custody and production methods,” it said.

Jörgen Sandström, Head of the Mining and Metals Industry at the WEF, said material value chains are undergoing profound change and disruption. “The industry needs to respond to the increasing demands of minerals and materials while responding to increasing demands by consumers, shareholders and regulators for a higher degree of sustainability and traceability of the products.”

The WEF has offered its platform and expertise to help industry leaders better understand the impact and potential of blockchain technology, it said. “It will provide guidance on governance issues related to the delivery of a neutral industry platform and the expansion of members.”

The move was welcomed by industry partners, including Ivan Arriagada, CEO of Antofagasta Minerals: “We hope this collaboration and pilot will give us practical examples of how blockchain can increase efficiency of the supply chain management and improve interoperability; address certain supply chain management risks such as transparency and consumer trust; and unlock opportunities including integration of key data such on environmental impact such carbon emissions.”

Benedikt Sobotka, CEO of Eurasian Resources Group, meanwhile, said the collaboration around blockchain technology would help industry efforts to enhance responsible sourcing. “By working together, our goal is to develop solutions that can be adopted across the industry and value chain,” he added.

Ivan Glasenberg, CEO of Glencore, said the development of this technology can facilitate industry reporting to improve compliance across the supply chain.

TV Narendran, CEO of Tata Steel, said: “As a responsible player in the mining and metals industry, we are committed to build a sustainable future.”

Jim Duffy, CEO of Tracr (representing Anglo American/De Beers), said the company looked forward to collaborating with the consortium as Tracr begins to roll-out its connected supply chain platform for the diamond industry. “Lessons learned creating Tracr are highly relevant to the sustainable sourcing of all mining and metals,” he added.

Metso cements Tata Steel relationship with iron ore pellet plant order

Metso has won a “significant order” to deliver a large-scale iron ore pellet plant and related engineering services to Tata Steel for the expansion of the Kalinganagar operation (pictured), in Odisha state, India.

The order was booked in Metso’s December quarter orders received, the mining OEM said.

The new pellet plant will be equipped with capability to use a dual fuel burner and a burner management system to enable the use of iron ore feed from different sources. This will optimise the overall cost of production, including the fuel type and consumption, according to Metso.

Victor Tapia, President, Metso’s Mining Equipment business area, said: “Metso and Tata Steel have a history of more than 25 years of successful cooperation. We take this much-valued partnership and the confidence in our knowhow as clear indicators that we have been able to meet their business needs in a fast-changing business environment. In line with our value proposition, we will assist Tata Steel in minimising fuel consumption and reducing their carbon footprint in pellet production.”

Tata is among the largest steel-producing companies globally, with manufacturing operations in 26 countries and crude deliveries of about 28 Mt in 2017. Operational since 2015, the Kalinganagar plant is one of Tata Steel’s key manufacturing locations in India, Metso says.

Kamal Pahuja, SVP Indian market area at Metso, said: “Working together with Tata Steel over the years, we have developed a strong understanding of their business and of what adds value to their operation; this understanding helps us to deliver the required performance. On that account, we were able to design a pelletising solution that enables the lowest cost per tonne of pellet produced while providing flexibility for varying qualities of feed to optimise the production quality and rate.”

Metso says it is the leading player in pelletising in India. This order is the company’s first iron ore pellet plant solution for Tata Steel.

Last year, Metso reported its largest-ever pellet plant delivery to JSW Steel.