Millennium Post

Japanese, South Korean steel firms keen to invest in India

Sources in the steel ministry say the govt has held several rounds of meetings and discussions to facilitate manufacturing of high-grade steel with the help of foreign cos

New Delhi: Steel companies from South Korea and Japan have shown interest to invest in India for manufacturing value-added products, Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh said.

A source in the ministry said: "The steel ministry is already in talks with Posco and Hyundai Steel to explore possibilities of investing in India for producing value-added steel products."

When asked if India has written or is in talks with some foreign companies such as Posco and Hyundai Steel to form joint ventures (JVs) with state-run companies Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) and Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Ltd (RINL), Minister Singh gave an affirmative reply.

"Yes. Whichever companies they are, they are from South Korea and Japan. They have shown their interests. In fact, they have also visited SAIL and RINL plants. We would certainly like if they come with transfer of technology through FDI for value-added products," he said. Sources in the ministry said the ministry has held several rounds of meetings and discussions to facilitate manufacturing of high-grade steel in India with the help of foreign companies especially from Korea and Japan. In November, the Ambassador of South Korea met Steel Secretary Binoy Kumar and said that Posco and Hyundai Steel might form JVs with RINL in due course of time.

The Ambassador also requested the top official to assure iron-ore linkage and incentives to the Korean companies for making them invest in India.

During the same month, the Ambassador of Japan also met the steel secretary regarding setting up of JVs or steel plant of high grade in India.

The minister earlier had said public sector companies have advantages such as captive mines and they must go for value-added special grades of steel.

India should cut its dependence on special steel product imports through value addition and form JVs with global leaders for technological know-how, he had said.

"Transfer of technology for production of automotive steel and other special steel will be facilitated by helping set up JVs with global leaders in such products," the minister has said.

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