BHUBANESWAR: EVEN as Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) and ArcelorMittal have been scouting for a suitable site for their auto-grade steel manufacturing facility, the joint venture (JV) partners are once again betting on Odisha. Responding to the state’s request on setting up the proposed project here, SAIL wrote a letter saying they would keep the eastern state in mind while zeroing in on the location for the proposed steel plant, said Odisha Principal Industry Secretary Sanjeev Chopra.
“They (SAIL-Mittal JV) are examining various locations. The ball is in their court. Once they express interest, the land is available, there are no issues of land acquisition,” Chopra said. SAIL has a steel plant in Rourkela with 4.5 million tonnes of hot metal and 4.2 million tonnes of crude steel per annum capacity. In May 2015, both the companies signed an MoU to explore the possibility of setting up an auto-grade steel manufacturing facility, with an estimated `150 billion.
The proposed JV will construct a cold rolling mill and other downstream finishing facilities in India, touted as one of the fastest- growing automotive markets in the world with production expected to double between 2014 and 2020, from 3.6 million units to 7.3 million units. Sajjan Jindal-led JSW Steel has given a proposal for the land given up by Korean steel giant Posco for setting up a steel plant.
“The recommendation has gone to Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation. Some formalities need to be completed for getting forest clearances, which was earlier in the name of Posco. They should be able to do the groundbreaking this year,” Chopra said.