September 18, 2014
Modernization of Qizilqum Phosphorite Plant is continuing
Uzbekistan continues ramping up its industrial capacity through commissioning new manufacturable objects focused on import substitution. Under these processes, Navoi Mining and Smelting Plant has completed a project on modernization and expansion of production at Qizilqum Phosphorite Plant.

Today, the agricultural sector of Uzbekistan is fully provided with domestically produced fertilizers, while 15 years ago the country had to import significant amounts of raw materials from Kazakhstan and Russia to produce phosphate fertilizers. The tendency needed to be reversed, since the country’s agriculture, and thus its food security could not depend on the situation on foreign markets and supplies from abroad.

Therefore, in 1996, the country made a strategic decision on import substitution of mineral fertilizers by developing the Jeroy-Sardaryo phosphorite deposit in the Central Qizilqum, which ranks as the world’s tenth in the reserves and resources. According to geologists, its reserves amount to over 300 million tons of ore, and nearly 60 million tons of phosphate rock. They will meet the demand of Uzbek agriculture in mineral fertilizers for many years ahead.

Specialists of NMSP were entrusted with the construction of a mining and processing complex. The first stage of the complex was commissioned at a record-breaking time. The first shipments of phosphate fertilizer to the Qo’qon Superphosphate Plant began yet in 1998, and production of calcined phosphate concentrate to the instant firing technology for the production of ammophos started in 2001. However, it looks so easy just on the paper. Domestic builders had to develop and apply complex and unique technological solutions for many times. For example, in order to increase the efficiency of industrial development of the field, improve the quality and increase the volume of phosphate production NMSP specialists developed a special compound flowsheet of phosphate rock enrichment that combined elements of the ‘dry’ technology with deep flushing methods of enrichment. The scheme has reduced the chlorine content in the concentrate and thus improved the manufacturability of the produced feedstock. German experts have made a tangible contribution in this process. As a result, the plant launched the so-called ‘wet’ cleaning shop, and in 2007 it launched the production of a new product - washed and unwashed calcined dried concentrates, as well as significantly improved the quality of phosphate products.

As part of the development strategy based on upgrade, technical and technological extension of production, as well as to meet the demand in the domestic market, it was decided to extend the manufacture of the phosphorite concentrate. NMSP signed a contract with the German company Engineering Dobersek GmBH worth 19.96 million euros, which was supposed to make the design of the processing part, supply hardware and spare parts, carry out installation and commissioning turnkey works. The total cost of the project exceeded $59 million, including $24.9 million of NMSP own funds, as well as the Khalq Bank loan of $35 million.

The second stage of the Qizilqum Phosphorite Plant was launched on the threshold of Independence Day of Uzbekistan. After reaching the design capacity, the plant will be able to increase the output of washed calcined phosphorite concentrate from 400 thousand to 716 thousand tons per year, creating more than 130 additional jobs.

(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)


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