KIOCL's scope to be explored in Chabahar port: minister

KIOCL's scope to be explored in Chabahar port: minister

Union Minister of Steel Chaudhary Birender Singh said he has issued directions to Union Ministry of Steel secretary on exploring the possibility of ‘expanding the scope’ of Kudremukh Iron Ore Company (KIOCL) Ltd in Chabahar Port in south-east Iran, being developed by India.

The minister, while interacting with reporters after inaugurating the 1.3 MW capacity solar power plant and laying the foundation for the modernisation of the blast furnace unit of KIOCL Ltd at Panambur on Wednesday, said that Chabahar Port assumes importance for India from the point of view of steel production and export of pellets by the KIOCL through the port to Iran. The secretary will look into the possibility of setting up a pellet plant or manufacturing rails for Iran or even carry out mining operations, by the KIOCL, he added.

“We are looking at what kind of participation KIOCL can play in the Chabahar Port,” the minister said and added that the scope of the KIOCL Ltd should increase by diversifying its activities.

Iran wanted to make full use of its relationship with India way back in the 1970s, the minister said and added that it cannot be continued for some reasons. As Prime Minister Narendra Modi is keen that the steel industry should be totally involved in Chabahar Port,  KIOCL Ltd’s next destination will be Chabahar, he said.

The minister, while emphasising on the safety aspect in the steel industry, said the ministry for the first time will organise Steel Safety Day across steel industries in India, on March 28. 

The ministry will also set up a directorate of steel safety to be a reality before February 10. The directorate will be a technical body, he added.