Russian coal miner and steelmaker Mechel OAO announced it has reached full production capacity at the Nerungrinskaya processing plant of Yakutugol Holding Company OAO and provided an update on the construction of Elga Coal Complex.

In July, Yakutugol’s Nerungrinskaya prep plant washed 783,000 metric tons (mt) of coking coal and produced 536,000 mt of concentrate and 197,000 mt of middlings. This is the highest monthly result the plant achieved in its 26-year history. These results were made possible by the well-coordinated work of the plant’s team, as well as the plant reaching its full production capacity.

The company achieved more success in construction of Elga Coal Complex, a subsidiary of Yakutugol. Sakha Republic’s Agency for Use of Mineral Resources gave permission to launch the first stage of the open-pit development at the Elga deposit. Separately, construction of the Ulak-Elga railway link was completed up to the 209-km point ahead of schedule. A coal reloading facility at this site will allow the company to transport Elga coal by truck until the railway is completed. This represents another critical milestone toward development of the coal deposit which is Mechel’s largest project for producing coking coal.

Annual production capacity at Elga Coal Complex will reach 27 million mt by 2021 according to the subsoil license’s conditions. With that production volume, the saleable production at Elga is expected to be more than 8 million mt of high-quality coking coal concentrate, some 5 million mt of steam coal concentrate from oxidized coal, and about 6 million mt of middlings.

According to the IMC-reviewed mine plan, by 2030 and beyond, when deeper seams are mined at the Elga open-pit, the same annual run-of-mine production volume is expected to yield more than 11.5 million mt of coking coal concentrate. The larger amount of coking coal concentrate from the same run-of-mine production will be achieved due to the natural decrease in the share of oxidized coal which lies closer to the surface.

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