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Karnataka not to have more steel, cement plants, says Nirani

Last updated: 29 May, 2010
Bangalore: May 29, DHNS: 23:59 IST

Govt more concerned about conserving natural resources

Karnataka Government will not entertain proposals for new steel and cement industries in the State, Industries Minister, Murugesh Nirani, said here on Saturday.

Even at the Global Investors’ Meet scheduled for June 3 and 4 in Bangalore, Memorandum of understandings (MoUs) will be signed only for those projects in these two sectors that have already been cleared.

Murugesh Nirani, who visited Deccan Herald office on Saturday, said there was no point in allowing more steel industries, as conserving natural resources–iron ore–was essential. Similarly in the cement sector, the Government had already cleared sufficient number of projects.

Asked whether South Korea-based Posco would invest in Karnataka, Nirani said the government would not entertain the company even if it was ready. Earlier, there was a proposal from the company for investment in the State.
The minister said the Government would give preference for domestic industrialists and was expecting to sign MoUs worth at least Rs four lakh crore. “Even if 60 per cent of investors set up industries, the State would get Rs 2.5 lakh crore. That is a huge investment,” he said.

Nirani also said that supplying power to new industries would not be a problem. Many mega projects, coming up in the state, would establish captive generation plants. As per a new rule, it was compulsory for private power generators to provide 30 per cent of the power they produce to the home state. The Government would benefit from this, he said.
The minister admitted there were some issues with providing water for industries. The Government was working out a module to lift water from the west-flowing rivers during the rainy season. Industries would be allotted parts of river courses for desilting. Besides, rainwater harvesting and water conserving mechanism would be made compulsory.

Inviting DH for the GIM, Nirani said top industrialists including Lakshmi Mittal of ArcelorMittal and Kumara Mangalam Birla of Aditya Birla group would attend the global meet. Mittal would land in a special flight and spend a few hours at the GIM.
The department had assigned senior IAS officers to accompany top industrialists during their stay in Bangalore.
D H News Service

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