India asks Vietnam to quicken process for Tata Steel plant

India asks Vietnam to quicken process for Tata Steel plant New Delhi: India Thursday asked Vietnam to speed up the process of land acquisition for Tata Steel's USD 5 billion steel project in the south east Asian nation.

The issue was raised by Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma Thursday during his meeting with Vietnamese counterpart Vu Huy Hoang here.

"Sharma asked Hoang to resolve all the outstanding issues so that this big investment goes through," a Commerce Ministry official said.

Tata Steel plans to invest USD 5 billion for setting up a 4.5 million tonnes per annum integrated steel plant in Ha Tinh province of Vietnam over a period of 10 years. The proposed investment would be the single largest Indian investment in the south east Asian nation.

However, the project has been stalled for more than four years now as the provincial government has asked Tata Steel to bear the estimated land acquisition cost of USD 200 million for around 4,000 acres of land.

The Indian steelmaker feels that the cited amount is much higher than what has been paid by some other companies in the similar province and has not been willing to pay the asked amount by the local government.

In July, Vietnam also sought financial assistance of USD 100 million from India towards payment of land compensation cost as part of its efforts of to break the deadlock for the project.

The Commerce Ministry official said that bilateral economic cooperation would receive a huge impetus if the Tata Steel project could be approved.

The project will also encourage further investments from India to Vietnam, he added.

PTI