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Rediff.com  » Business » ArcelorMittal close to Orissa land buy

ArcelorMittal close to Orissa land buy

February 11, 2008 18:20 IST

ArcelorMittal has moved a few steps forward in setting up its 12-million tonnes steel plant in Keonjhar district of Orissa. The company is close to acquiring two-thirds of the land required , firmed up its resettlement and rehabilitation plan, and is close to freezing the project details.

"We are in the process of being allotted 7,000 acres of the 10,000 acres we need for the steel complex. This has been principally-approved by IPICOL, the single window clearance authority of the Orissa government for land, water and power," said Remi Boyer, Secretary General of the Group Management Board and Vice President Corporate Social Responsibility, ArcelorMittal.

The steel plant would require about 7,000 acres while the power plant and township would require another 3,000 acres.  "We are in an advanced stage in land acquisition; it's 90 per cent done," added Boyer.  IPICOL is acquiring the land on behalf of ArcelorMittal. Boyer was in Brazil with a team of Indian journalists visiting ArcelorMittal's Brazil facilities.

Dastur & Co, which was appointed by ArcelorMittal to study the project parameters and suggest the site layout, is likely to submit a Detailed Project Report by June 2008, based on which the company would contract out its equipment orders to suppliers.

In October, ArcelorMittal had set up a 15-member technical group consisting of specialists drawn from across different plants and geographies, which is backing Dastur & Co.  The company has also hired two general managers each for Orissa and Jharkhand for Corporate Social Responsibility.

"We are challenging the site layout prepared by Dastur & Co to see how we can have the best-in-class steel operations," Boyer told Business Standard. The site layout provides for where the blast furnace should be or where the power plant should be located.

IL&FS Ecosmart, which offers consulting services to project developers and was assigned by Arcelor Mittal to prepare an R&R plan for its Orissa project in line with the state government's R&R policy, submitted its report in December 2007. "We plan to discuss this with the state government to prioritise things," said Boyer. Ecosmart went to villages and interviewed people.

The project is expected to displace 15,000-17,000 people in 3,000 villages in Keonjhar district and the Mittal's are keen to get its R&R plan right.

"When we implement the project, it is important that we do the R&R really well," added a spokesman for ArcelorMittal.

Ranju Sarkar in Belo Horizonte, Brazil
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