The Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant has provided a performance report for 2018.
The total amount of processed ore in 2018 amounted to 1.431 million tonnes (111.8% vs. 2017 results), which corresponds to 77.0 thousand tonnes of ferronickel from ore (106.2% vs. the previous year) or 15.8 thousand tonnes of nickel (103.4% vs. previous year). In 2018, the efforts of plant management were aimed at carrying out a complex of major repairs on the primary technological equipment: during 1Q 2018, the planned overhaul of the ore-thermal furnace No. 2 was carried out (for reference: the duration of repairs taking into account loading and heating was 56 days); in November a number of repairs to other basic equipment (ore-thermal furnace No. 1, tubular rotary kiln No. 2, areas of ore drying, areas of production of coal dust) were performed, and in order to improve the environmental situation, works on reconstruction of the third stage of gas purification equipment on tubular rotary kilns No. 1 and No. 2 were initiated. Last year, the company achieved a positive financial result.
For the first quarter of 2019, long-term major repairs of the main technological equipment are planned: ore-thermal furnace No. 1 (for information: the duration of repair with consideration for loading and heating is 53 days) and tubular rotary furnace No. 1 (for information: duration is 50 days). These will lead to a certain reduction in production capacity and volume, but in the future will allow to increase productivity and improve the financial results.
The planned volume of processed ore for 2019 is 1.572 million tonnes, ferronickel – 85.1 thousand tonnes, nickel – 18.1 thousand tonnes.
During the reporting period, the plant paid taxes to the budget of Ukraine in the amount of UAH 90.3 million. (123.7% vs. the previous year). Social contributions were equal to UAH 45.8 million (124.9% vs. previous year) and UAH 36.9 million for in payroll taxes (127.6% vs. the previous year).
Since July 1, 2018, the wages of employees have increased on average by 38% and have been differentiated for different categories of employees. Considering the requirements of the current legislation, additional payments to the minimum set level of UAH 3,723 were made. The average monthly wage in 2H 2018 (after the increase) amounted to 10,656 UAH, and for the whole year – UAH 9 347, which is 40.8% and 35.8% higher respectively compared to the corresponding periods of 2017, and exceeded the average level of wages in Ukraine by 5.4%.
“The plant continues to invest in the infrastructure of the town of Pobuzhske and in its social programs. At the same time, the budget allocated for the realization of our social obligations has been increased due to inflation. The social component is one of the most important priorities of our work,” explained PFK CEO Oleg Bespalov.
In 2018, the total expenses for maintaining the social sphere of the town of Pobuzhske amounted to UAH 4.5 million (117.8% compared to last year). PFP spent UAH 5.6 million on sponsorship, cultural and mass work and rehabilitation of employees; for 1H 2019, UAH 3.1 million are planned for this purpose, for the entire year – UAH 6.0 million.
In 2018, PFP’s personnel training expenses amounted to UAH 693.7 thousand (which is almost 4 times higher than in the previous year), including expenses for study in higher educational establishments – UAH78.5 thousand, and UAH 615.2 thousand for personnel development. In 2018, 141 people acquired new professions, 57 people were reskilled, and 231 people increased their professional levels. Two people continued their studies at the university on a full-time basis, and four people are on external degree programs. During 1H 2019, UAH 332.0 thousand was allocated for staff training, and in total, UAH 477.0 thousand for the calendar year.
In 2018, UAH 74.1 million was spent on major repairs of the primary technological equipment. The planned cost of major repairs to the primary technological equipment in 2019 was UAH 111.7 million.
In 2018, investments in support of production capacity (purchases of equipment, machinery, construction, etc.) amounted to UAH 15.6 million. UAH 2.5 million was invested in environmental programs.
In 2017, the plant started a long-term project for reconstruction of the third stage of gas-cleaning equipment on tubular rotary kilns (TOP) No. 1 and No. 2. In 2018, the first stage of construction was completed – the transition of TOP-1 gas purification to a temporary scheme with the installation of a smoke extractor and the transfer of gas ducts to the chimney, which will allow to perform the second stage without the stoppage of primary production. The total cost (cost of equipment received and works performed) amounted to UAH 48.1 million. Upon completion of the program, the level of emission reductions will increase to 99.9%.