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We continue to believe in India: Mittal

November 05, 2008 17:20 IST
Last Updated: November 05, 2008 17:29 IST

NRI steel tycoon L N Mittal on Wednesday said valuation of steel companies in India had come down significantly but there were no sellers.

"Today is not the time for acquiring companies... these companies are very cheap today but I do not believe that there are sellers to sell these companies," Mittal said replying to

a query on whether he would look at acquisition in India in view of delays in his proposed 24 million-tonne Greenfield projects in the country at an investment of Rs 80,000 crore (Rs 800 billion).

He, however, asserted that ArceolorMittal would not lose its focus on its major presence in the country.

High on good quarterly results with net profits growing by 29 per cent to $3.8 billion, Mittal told PTI in a telephonic interview from Luxembourg that "everyone is looking for an opportunity".

Mittal, who has created the world's largest steel empire and threw a slew of mergers and acquisition across the globe, was responding to a query whether he would prospect for more companies as global valuations of entities have come down.

When asked about the India market, he said "our long-term strategy for India is unchanged. We continue to believe in India. We continue to believe in its future growth. Globally, India is considered as a growth market". "I can clearly see a bright prospect and future for India," he added.

On the current economic scenario, he said everyone is waiting for quick return to normal scenario. "There are production cuts in China, in India, all over the should take place".

He said the Indian government and policy makers should take more steps to create a conducive atmosphere for generating higher demands. 

"The government should invest more and encourage more spending in infrastructure and development. All the countries are doing so. All these things will bring the change," Mittal said.

On whether he felt that Indian policy planners had taken the right steps to overcome the crisis, Mittal said, "What we would like to see is government helping people in buying more and investing more into housing, buying more in the retail market... Consumer expenditure should go up and government should commit more spending in infrastructure."

Like the government, there should be commitments from all business houses so that it translates into a greater demand for housing and consumer durables, like for two-wheelers and cars, he said.

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