South Korean Steelmaker POSCO, which has revealed plans for constructing a USD 12 billion (approximately Rs 90,000 crores) greenfield steel mill in the eastern Indian state of Odisha, is open to exploring opportunities to undertake the project in partnership with a domestic or international investor, an Odisha government official said on April 21.
Participating in a roundtable on ‘South Korea and Odisha: Promoting Bilateral Business Opportunities’ organized by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in association with Industrial Promotion and Invest Corporation of Odisha Ltd (IPICOL) through virtual mode, South Korea Ambassador to India Shin Bongkil said, Korean steel giant POSCO has plans to make one of the single largest FDI in the history of India with an investment of USD12 billion to set up an integrated steel plant in Odisha.
The latest POSCO plans for a greenfield steel mill project comes after several failed bids previously. In 2005, POSCO had signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the government of Odisha to construct a 12 million mt per year steel mill at the port town of Paradip in the state, but the project was abandoned in 2012 after the government failed to hand over the required land to the company, reported The Times of India. POSCO had also signed an MOU with the government of the southern Indian state of Karnataka to set up a steel mill project with a capacity of 6 million mt per year in the state, but this too was subsequently abandoned.
Informing that 66 new Korean companies have entered India in the last year, Bongkil said these companies have made an investment of US $17 million in 2020 as compared to the USD 21.15 million in the previous year which is a very good figure keeping in view the pandemic situation. Director of Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency Young Seaon Park said the Korean companies are very eager to work in the areas of renewable energy, water treatment, and smart city projects.
Minister of State for Industries and MSME Dibya Shankar Mishra said Odisha and Korea have many possibilities to collaborate across the identified focus sectors of the State. He said Odisha is in the process of implementing a strategy document, Vision 2030, which aims to ensure that 50 percent of the primary metals produced in the State are value-added in the State.