27 January 2014
Group DF invested UAH 150 million in Crimean Soda Plant in 2013
In 2013, Group DF invested about UAH 150 million in development of Crimean Soda Plant, the largest manufacturer of soda ash and baking soda in Ukraine. This enabled implementation of three strategically important investment projects aimed at development of Crimean Soda Plant’s own raw material base, launch of new types of products, and an increase in energy efficiency.
“2013 was not an easy year for the global chemical industry, but due to long-term contracts with key partners we managed to maintain a near-maximum load of production capacities. Moreover, we managed to implement several large-scale investment projects totalling UAH 150 million,” said Vladyslav Shmelkov, Chairman of the Board of Crimean Soda Plant.
In particular, in 2013, Crimean Soda Plant invested UAH 90 million in construction of a cogeneration unit for production of electric and heat energy from natural gas. The production capacity of the new unit is 14.4 MW/h. After its commissioning, Crimean Soda Plant will produce about 126 thousand MW of electric energy and 177.3 thousand Gcal of heat energy a year. The company expects return of investment in this project in 4 years. “Implementation of this project will allow Crimean Soda produce 90% of its total demand for electricity, as well as reducing natural gas consumption by 11%,” reported Dmytro Nechytailo, Head of Non-Core Business Department of Group DF.
Also, in 2013, Crimean Soda Plant invested over UAH 5 million in opening of the Northern Baksan deposit. The total investment into the project reached UAH 200 million. It is aimed at providing the company with its own raw material, the limestone, which is used in soda production. The annual demand of Crimean Soda Plant in limestone is estimated at 1.1 million tons.
“We believe that investments into development of the Northern Baksan deposit have huge potential. First, our own raw material base is a good competitive advantage, which will enable Crimean Soda Plant to reduce soda ash production cost by 10-15%,” stated Dmytro Nechytailo. “Secondly, the enterprise in the future will be able to become a major trader on the limestone market. Though the present capacities of the deposit allow for extraction of nearly 0.9 million tons of limestone a year, eventually we plan to increase extraction to 2.2 million tons.”
Besides, in 2013, Crimean Soda Plant became the sole manufacturer of baking soda in Ukraine. Over UAH 30 million were invested to launch baking soda production in 2013.
“We consider that the launch of baking soda production is a landmark project of the national scale, because over the recent four years Ukraine has been forced to import this product due to lack of domestic production,” noted Vladyslav Shmelkov. “In two years we plan to increase production capacities from the current 20 to 48 thousand tons of baking soda per year. Since Ukraine annually consumes about 25 thousand tons of baking soda, with the increase of production we intend to export part of it.”
Baking soda production fits well in the production chain of Crimean Soda Plant and has an ecological impact as the greenhouse gas emitted in the process of soda ash production will now be used for baking soda production. As the result, the emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere will be reduced by 4%.
Moreover, in 2013, Crimean Soda Plant invested about UAH 23 million in the overhaul and maintenance of its operating equipment, constructions and facilities.
Overall in 2012-2013, Group DF’s investments into Crimean Soda Plant reached around UAH 380 million.
In 2013, Crimean Soda Plant produced 582 thousand tons of soda ash, including 427.5 thousand tons of soda ash grade “A”, 24.4 thousand tons of edible salt, and over 4 thousand tons of baking soda.