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|“Pobuzhsky ferronickel integrated works” Ltd.|
Pobugsky Ferronickel Plant (PFP) is the Ukraine’s only ferronickel producer. The plant continues to thrive on the global marketplace, while operating within an ethical framework and during a nickel deficit.
Since 2003, the Solway Investment Group, Ltd., has invested over 130 million USD into modernizing PFP, which includes rebuilding the plant’s electric furnace and installing waste heat recovery technology.
In 2011, the Group completed the reconstruction of one of PFP’s two thermal electric furnaces. Canadian engineering company Hatch oversaw the reconstruction, which increased the furnace’s power by 10% and increased overall production capacity by 29%. The project also extended the length of time the furnace can operate without a maintenance shutdown. The Group plans to invest an additional 50 million USD in the reconstruction of PFP’s second furnace. The timetable of the reconstruction is dependent on a variety of factors, chiefly political and economic developments in Ukraine and changes in energy cost regulations.
In 2013 to 2014, the Group invested a total of 15 million USD into energy-saving technologies; i.e., the installation of waste heat recovery technology and of a pulverized coal fuel system, which decreases energy costs associated with ferronickel production at PFP.
The new energy-efficient technology has allowed PFP to decrease its level of dependence on Russian gas, while maintaining full operational capacity. Since the plant introduced a pulverized coal fuel system, its annual pulverized coal consumption increased from 105,000 tons in 2013 to 137,000 tons in 2014. In 2014, its gas consumption decreased to 13,600 cubic meters, down from 85,600 cubic meters in 2013.
PFP’s expansion is consistently in accordance with the environmental regulations imposed by the Ukrainian government. Since 2009, PFP has invested over 9 million UAH into the integration of green technologies at the plant.
The Group has a number of mineral projects in various stages of development; these will increase its mineral reserves and production capacity, particularly in the nickel segment. The diversity of the Group’s assets helps it to reduce its exposure to cyclical market downturns for a single metal. Synergy of the Group’s assets contributes to the effective maintenance of PFP operations in a challenging environment, and allows PFP to remain socially responsible as well as profitable.
PFP’s current annual production capacity averages 1,1 million metric tons of dry ore, which can be processed into 22,000 metric tons of nickel in FeNi per year. In 2013, PFP produced 1.139 million metric tons of dry ore (1.561millionmetric tons of wet ore), which was processed into 21,184 metric tons of nickel. In 2014, PFP’s production capacity totaled 1,428 million metric tons of wet ore (1,005 metric tons of dry ore), which was processed into 18, 615 metric tons of nickel.
Social Infrastructure Support:
In 2014, t he Group invested 2.27 million UAH in social infrastructure; this amount includes but is not limited to financial assistance to local schools, hospitals, and sports programs, and maintenance of civic infrastructure. It contributed 2.2 million UAH to charities and sponsorships.
PFP supports its staff with educational assistance, including for those employees studying at government universities. In 2014, four PFP employees received monthly stipends, and 15 were awarded financial support for continuing education.
Total educational assistance payments in 2014 are estimated at 214,000 UAH, including 71,800 UAH grants for professional qualification, and 22,500 UAH in student grants.
Due to inflation, PFP has increased its level of employee support, which is currently estimated at 190,000 UAH. Every month, employees with an urgent need can apply for financial support in the form of interest-free loans.
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