Swiss-based Global Steel Dust Co (GSD) is ready to start construction of Southeast Asia’s first steel-dust recycling facility worth US$40 million once investment privileges are awarded by Thailand’s Board of Investment (BoI).
Russ Robinson, GSD’s chief executive, said in Bangkok yesterday the company planned to develop a steel-dust (red dust) recycling plant at Amata City in Rayong on 58 rai.
The plant, GSD’s first outside the US, will have the capacity to recycle up to 110,000 tonnes of steel dust. Capacity can be doubled if the steel industry grows in the future, said Mr Robinson.
GSD will use its Waelz Kiln technology that recycles steel dust without use of a landfill, and it expects commercial production to commence in the fourth quarter this year.
Thailand has 14 electric arc furnaces that produce steel by recycling steel scrap but generate dust that contains valuable zinc and iron during the process. Those steel millers produce 80,000-100,000 tonnes of dust a year, with most of it going to landfill.
The company announced its Thai investment plan in September. Construction was supposed to start in October but was delayed as the BoI verified the appropriate technology for the plant. GSD expects BoI approval over the next two weeks.
GSD has purchased 200 million baht worth of equipment, while credit financing and sales agreements for red dust and steel products have been signed.
Last month GSD sold 10% of its equity in its Thai wholly-owned business unit to Australia-based Macquarie Bank, who is also the financial sponsor of its Thai plant.
GSD is also looking for business opportunities in South Korea and Saudi Arabia.