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POSCO puts $12b India steel project on hold

July 15, 2015 - 18:37 By KH디지털2

POSCO decided to temporarily suspend its already delayed $12 billion steel plant construction project in India, company chairman Kwon Oh-joon said Wednesday.

”We decided to tentatively stop the project as we have not seen visible progress. The project will remain at all stop unless the Indian government offers a better deal” Kwon told The Korea Herald after an investors’ relations session in Seoul. 

The continuous galvanizing line facility run by POSCO Maharashtra, POSCO’s Indian unit. (POSCO)

POSCO’s Indian project ― to build a factory with a 12 million-ton yearly production capacity in Odisha’s Jagatsinghpur district ― has been delayed for 10 years due to a backlash from residents, environmental concerns and other reasons.

“For now, we are not backing the project due to a number of factors there. If the situation changes for the better, we’ll see what happens then,” a POSCO spokesman said.

The stalled project met the biggest hurdle earlier this year when the Odisha regional government decided to require all mining licenses for iron ore and other minerals to be awarded via auctions.

Dealing a further blow, it was at odds with the Indian state government over a payment dispute for its construction site.

The announcement was made after the group revealed it would refrain from investing in new overseas upstream manufacturing projects, referring to its blast furnace and integrated steel mill.

The spokesman stressed that the company is “not pulling out” from India but is shifting its focus from upstream to downstream manufacturing process with processed materials.

By Suk Gee-hyun (