Jajpur: Not able to take off its 12 million tonnes plant in Odisha, global Steel giant POSCO is likely to shift its first Finex plant to Kalinganagar, in the state from Pohang, South Korea after a definitive pact with homegrown steelmaker MESCO, which is scheduled by August.
"We have already signed an initial pact with POSCO for shifting of its patented Finex technology plant at Mesco premises at Kalinganagar in Jajpur. The shifting should begin in the next two to three months post a definitive pact with POSCO, which is scheduled by August," Director Finance, MESCO, Natasha Singh Sinha said here.
She said POSCO will have a minority share in the joint venture and the discussions are on to finalise the equity as well as the exact location for shifting of the plant.
"The shifting will be done at Maithan Ispat or MSIL, which is currently under discussion because both the possibilities exist. They won't have to start from scratch, acquire land and face earlier issues. We are offering minority stake that has not been announced yet. We are discussing on equity. This is clear that they will have minority and that they know," Sinha said.
She added the final numbers would be announced by August.
MESCO Steel through its arm Mideast Integrated Steels Ltd (MISL) had set up a steel plant of 1.2 MT per annum (MTPA) capacity in Kalinganagar, Odisha, while in April this year it acquired Maithan Ispat for Rs 1,160 crore.
POSCO, which has earlier this year signed an initial joint venture pact "with us will start dismantling the unit and start shifting it here in two to three months," she added.
Posco's patented Finex is an iron making technology, which has "significant potential to reduce operating cost" as it eliminates the reliance on expensive coking coal.
The Korean major had signed an agreement with state-run Steel Authority of India for setting up a steel unit using the same technology, but it never took off owing to shareholding issue as it demanded a majority share.
However, Sinha said, POSCO would be satisfied with a minority stake in its joint venture with MESCO for relocating the plant at Kalinganagar in Odisha. The Pohang plant has six lakh tonnes per annum capacity.
When contacted, a POSCO spokesperson told PTI, "It is not fixed yet (shifting schedule). It will take more time to discuss."
Both MESCO and POSCO had signed a pact in March and the Indian firm had then said that the Korean giant will have 26 per cent equity in the JV.