New Delhi: South Korean steel major POSCO may kick off work on its initial 8 million tonne per annum (MTPA) project near Paradip in Odisha by October if the state government transfers 2,700 acres of land to it.
"The Orissa government has acquired 2,100 acres. They have assured us to transfer 2,700 acres of land in next few months. After the transfer, we hope to start land preparation work for the project by October," a POSCO official said.
"The development came in a recent meeting of our India CMD Y W Yoon with Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik," the official, who did not wish to be quoted, added.
POSCO and the Orissa government have also reached an understanding to initially downsize the mega steel project to 8 MT from earlier proposed 12 MT, the official said.
He said that while POSCO required 4,004 acres of land for the 12 MT project, the Odisha government had said that it was not in a position to transfer entire land in one go so it has been decided to take the plant capacity to original 12 MT plan gradually.
However, when asked the cost of the initial 8 MT plant, the official said it has still to be worked out as though downsized the calculations etc would be based on full infrastructure set up of 12 MT.
The official said that a pact for initial plant would be finalised soon and the state government, POSCO India and its parent organisation POSCO, would sign a tripartite agreement on the new arrangement very soon.
The USD 12 billion project (Rs 52,000 crore) is hanging fire for the last about seven years on account of land acquisition and regulatory hurdles.
First Published: Wednesday, May 30, 2012, 16:37