SHANGHAI, Jun. 27 (SMM) - Iron mines, coal mines and quarries in Chicheng, Huai'an and Xuanhua are forced to suspend production last Saturday, without deciding the time when to restart. With the exception of Hebei I/S' iron mines near Beizhuang, all private mines and beneficiation plants halted operation on Saturday, but there are some mines restart device in the evening.
Zhangjiakou is a major iron ore producing region in Hebei province, and it produced 55 million mt of concentrates in 2012, which claimed 11% of the total volume produced in Hebei province. Output from Chicheng accounts for 70% of total output in Zhangjiakou. Mines in Chicheng county are generally open-pit mines, with dust the most important pollutant in the shattering process.
Large mining enterprises in Chengde, including Tianbao and Yuantong introduced dust-cleaning devices in compliance wtih local government orders, with high costs. A beneficiation plant with capacity of 800,000 mt/yr needs to invest nearly ten million yuan, or RMB 12.5/mt in concentrates production, and operating costs will add another several yuan in total costs. SMEs in Zhangjiakou are confronting with sluggish market situations, low margins and financing difficulties.
Nearly a million people will lost their jobs once SMEs in Zhajiangkou are eliminated as the iron ore industry is a backbone industry in Zhangjiakou. Local government was forced to implement inspections to respond media reports, and mines will likely be allowed to restart as long as they increase environmental protection input. All iron mines in Xingtai, Hebei were forced to suspend production for environmental protection inspections in 1H 2012.