Nickel production program evaluated in Cuba

Nickel production program evaluated in Cuba


Cubaplus courtesy of Prensa Latina

The production of nickel and cobalt in the municipality of Moa, east of the country, and the investment in this industry were analyzed by Commander of the Revolution Ramiro Valdés, Deputy prime minister of Cuba, transcended today.

During a meeting with executives, researchers and specialists in this sector in the province of Holguín, Valdés checked the progress of the proposed production for 2020, which plans to extract more than 50 thousand tons of nickel.

The also member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of Cuba reflected on the complexities of this year for this sector, hit by the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic sanctions of the United States government on the island.

However, the Comandante Pedro Sotto Alba-Moa Nickel SA plant, a joint venture with the Canadian firm Sherritt International, over complies with its 101 percent nickel plus cobalt extraction plans, while offsetting the limitations of another similar plant: Commander Ernesto Che Guevara.

This second company has seen the rhythm of its processes affected by excess humidity due to the rains and problems with the combustion nodes of the furnaces, among other aspects.

Nevertheless, it meets its commitments regarding export earnings, thanks to the current prices of these metals in the international market.

Valdés reiterated the urgency of establishing a solid alliance with the academy, to solve the problems that have a negative impact on the production and performance rates in both factories.

In this way, he learned about some of the research work carried out in 2020, aimed at import substitution, diversification of the industry's production and analyses of lands containing alloys of various metals, among others.

For his part, Emilio Oriol, director of the Basic Technical Services Unit, reported on the over 50 studies carried out in the 'Che Guevara', of which some 29 have direct application and others are in the process of validation.

In the work session, which was also attended by the Minister of Energy and Mines, Nicolás Arronte, the progress of the investments in execution was evaluated, as well as the progress of Moa's Integral Development Program, which promotes the construction of housing, food production and other projects.

Cuba currently ranks ninth in the world in terms of nickel production and is the fifth global reserve of this metal and the third for cobalt.