Mittal plans 30K-cr revival of Ballari steel plant

Mittal plans 30K-cr revival of Ballari steel plant

ArcelorMittal Chairman and CEO Lakshmi Mittal

World’s largest steel-maker ArcelorMittal is keen to revive its six-million-tonne per annum (MTPA) steel project at an investment of Rs 30,000 crore in Ballari district.

The Luxembourg-based company, which had shelved the project two years ago due to unavailability of raw material linkage, has approached the state government once again with a proposal to revive the project, a top government official said.

ArcelorMittal had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Karnataka government during the global investors’ meet on June 3, 2010, in the presence of its chairman Lakshmi Nivas Mittal. It had proposed to invest Rs 30,000 crore to set up its integrated steel plant along with a 750-MW captive power plant in Ballari district.

The company, however, shelved the project as there was no commitment from the state government on allocation of iron ore reserves. Instead, it had sought permission to set up a 600-MW solar power plant at the same location where the government has allotted 2,800 acres of land to the company in Kuditini village.

“The company has again come forward to set up the steel plant and given a formal proposal to the government. Their application is currently under consideration and the government is yet to take a final decision,” Gaurav Gupta, principal secretary, Department of Commerce and Industries, Karnataka government, told DH. He said the government has not agreed to the company’s proposal to convert the land use and set up a solar farm.

Despite repeated attempts, ArcelorMittal did not comment on the development till the time of going to press.

“The company has been asking for an extension of time to execute their project. A final decision is yet to be taken by the government. Earlier, they were given one or two extensions. In 2015-16, they asked for one more,” Gupta said. He said the government was not in favour of giving permission to set up a solar farm as it was felt it will not lead to large employment generation. Subsequently, the company submitted a proposal for the steel plant.

The Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB) has acquired and handed over to the company 2,800 acres land at Kuditini village in Ballari district for their proposed steel plant.