THPAL MILESTONES IN THE PHILIPPINES

by Philippine Resources - June 28, 2022

Photo credit: Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation

The Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation (THPAL), a mineral processing plant, was incorporated in the Philippines on August 22, 2008 to engage mainly in the manufacture and export of Nickel and Cobalt Mixed Sulfide.

THPAL’s Plant is designed to have an annual output of 30,000 MT of Nickel and 2,640 Metric of Cobalt in the form of Ni-Co Mixed Sulfide with a project life span of 30 years. This Ni-Co Mixed Sulfide will be exported to the Nihama Nickel Refinery in Ehime Prefecture, Japan.

However, with the continuous research and development, THPAL pioneered the production of Scandium in the country in 2019 and further, successfully conducted its Chromite commercial production in April 2021.

The Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation is a subsidiary of Sumitomo Metal Mining Co.,Ltd Japan and sister company of Coral Bay Nickel Corporation (CBNC), the first company in the world to successfully employ the highly efficient High Pressure Acid Leaching (HPAL) technology that turns low-grade Nickel ore into a manufactured intermediate product of high commercial value.

Over the last 8 years since its commercial operation in the country, particularly in the Province of Surigao del Norte, THPAL have been contributing in 5 major ways:

Adding Value to the Low-Grade Ores

Using the HPAL technology, THPAL optimizes the utilization of minerals by producing several rare mineral products from the low-grade ores, which is not of value before. Through its advance technology, THPAL produces Nickel and Cobalt in the form of MS Sulfide, Scandium and Chromite.

Adding Value to the Environment

The company advocates responsible environmental management to protect the environment beyond compliance and adheres to stringent safety measures, while operating its state-of-the-art plant facility equipped with Hydrogen Sulfide plant, Power Plant, Wastewater Treatment Facility, Sewage Treatment Plant, air pollution control facility and other pollution control mechanisms put in place to safeguard the people and the environment. The plant achieved its ISO 14001:2015 certification in 2017.

Adding Value to the Communities

THPAL started the implementation of the Social Development and Management Program prior to its commercial operation to address the clamor of the communities for an improved quality of life. To date, the company is supporting 536 college scholars, 699 senior citizens and 233 Persons with Disability, 12 people’s organizations with 306 members, 165 Barangay Health Works and other medical workers in the communities, and other 255 recipients. We have been responsible for the construction multi- million infrastructure projects like schools, roads, health centers, churches, to name a few.

Adding Value to the Filipino Skills

The company cultivates a diverse workforce where upon joining THPAL, were exposed to a wide array of skills that puts premium to their individual professions. They are not only trained to become experts in their own field, but to become responsible citizens of the communities.

Adding Value to the Economy

The entry of THPAL to the industry brought forth employment opportunities to thousands of locals. This is also considered as the region’s major economic driver with the infusion of 1.6B US dollar for the establishment of the project in Barangay Taganito, Claver, Surigao del Norte.

The company does not only aspire to become the leading HPAL plant in the world but it believes that success in business is, when society grows with it by providing lasting benefits to the Filipino people and the world. The Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation is Surigao del Norte’s pride in the Caraga Region.


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Philippine Resources - December 07, 2021

THPAL commences Chromite Production

Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation (THPAL), a mineral processing plant and a subsidiary of Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., Ltd (SMM), officially started its commercial operation of chromite last March 2021 to produce chromite concentrate. The company decided to commercially extract chromite to be used primarily as a raw material for stainless steel. With the Chromite Recovery Plant of the company, THPAL can now recover chromite simultaneously during the production process of nickel and cobalt mixed sulfides, the first intermediate product of the company. Chromite has brownish to black-colored mineral and is refined and processed into the intermediate product ferrochrome, widely used as a raw material for stainless steel and other special steels. This can also be used as paint pigment to produce Chrome Yellow for the textile industry, where large amounts of chromium compound as chemical to fix a dye are commonly used. According to Engr. Rey Prado, head of THPAL Chromite Recovery Plant, “It has been shown that there is an increase of the worldwide demand for chromite from November 2018 and the market is still growing. With this, the company’s target is to produce high quality chromite for quarterly shipment on demand of the customer.” By efficiently recovering not only nickel and cobalt but also its by-products such as scandium and chromite in THPAL, it will increase the cost competitiveness of its HPAL technology. This will likewise provide new materials for the stainless-steel industry, which is the backbone of the nickel business. By doing so, SMM’s presence in the global nickel industry through its subsidiary companies will push the realization of its vision of “Becoming the World Leader in the Non-Ferrous Metals Industry” by 2030. This will likewise add value to the low grade ores and increase the contribution of the company to employment generation and to the coffers of the government. Brief Description of THPAL Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation (THPAL) is a mineral processing plant located at Taganito Special Economic Zone, Barangay Taganito, Claver in the province of Surigao del Norte, which employs the highly efficient High Pressure Acid Leaching (HPAL) technology to turn low-grade nickel ore into a manufactured intermediate product of high commercial value. With its estimated cost of 1.6 billion US Dollars, it became one of the largest foreign direct investment projects in the Philippines. THPAL’s plant is designed to have an annual production of 30,000 metric tons of Nickel and 2,640 metric tons of Cobalt in the form of Ni-Co Mixed Sulfide. This Ni-Co Mixed Sulfide will be exported to Nihama Nickel Refinery in Ehime Prefecture, Japan. THPAL is likewise the country’s sole producer of scandium – the rarest mineral on earth -- and on April 2021 THPAL started the commercial operation of its Chromite Recovery Plant to produce chromite concentrate.

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