Korean Economy News
Hanwha's mining biz records stellar sales in overseas markets

Noh Hyun and Cho Jeehyun

Hanwha Group, South Korea's eight largest conglomerate with businesses spanning from defense system and chemicals to finance, is rapidly expanding its presence in the global metal mining market with this year's overseas sales estimated at 200 billion won ($164.8 million), a 12-fold jump in five years.

Hanwha Corp., the conglomerate's holding entity, said Wednesday that it earlier this month secured a contract worth 10 billion won from an Indonesian metal mining company to supply industrial explosives. It was the group's sixth contract that it has earned in Indonesia alone so far this year, totaling 27 billion won. Separately, it also was named as a preferred bidder for a rock salt mining project worth 10 billion won in Chile.

The company estimates this year's revenue from overseas metal mining business to reach 200 billion won. It would be a 12-fold jump from 2014 when the business made forays into overseas markets.

The company offers a comprehensive metal mining service, ranging from manufacturing and supplying industrial explosives to chamber blasting and clearing debris.

The company's performance in natural resource-rich Australia and Indonesia has been especially outstanding.

Hanwha acquired Low Density Explosives (LDE) Corp. Australia, an Australian mining service provider, in 2015. Since then, it rapidly expanded its mining service business in the country to double its revenue in the country to 52.4 billion won just one year after the acquisition. Its revenue for full 2019 is estimated to reach up to 90 billion won.

To add a further boost to the business growth in the Australian market, the Korean company currently is building an industrial explosives manufacturing plant in southern Australia with an annual production capacity of 50,000 tons. Once the construction of the plant is completed, which is due next year, Hanwha is expected to churn out 150,000 tons of industrial explosives just in Australia. That is a double of what it can produce at its home turf Korea.

The company also manufactures industrial explosives in Indonesia. It opened a manufacturing plant with an annual production capacity of 23,000 tons in 2014 after setting up a local subsidiary a year earlier. It is currently building a blasting caps manufacturing plant in the Southeast Asian country to better respond to surging local demand. Blasting caps are one of the major components for producing detonators.

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