June 3, 2009

JSW Steel defers Rs 35,000 cr West Bengal project

New Delhi,2nd June: After cutting investment in the first phase of the its ambitious 10-MTPA West Bengal project by almost a third, JSW Steel on Tuesday said the commencement of construction work at the site of the mega steel plant will now be deferred on account of the current "economic situation."

"There is a slight deferral for some time (on the commencement of construction work) till the economic situation improves," JSW Steel Vice-Chairman and MD Sajjan Jindal told reporters on the sidelines of an Assocham conference here.

Construction work at the site of the steel project in Salboni, West Bengal was scheduled to start in March next year, but is likely to be delayed by 6-8 months.

Faced with a liquidity crunch JSW Steel has earlier this year said that it is cutting its proposed investment by nearly one-third to about Rs 4,000 crore for the first phase of the Rs 35,000-crore mega steel project in West Bengal.

In November last year, the company had laid the foundation stone for the project and said the first phase with three million tonne capacity would come up at the cost of Rs 10,000-12,000 crore.

When asked if its another 10-MTPA proposed steel project in Jharkhand would also be delayed on account of the current economic environment, Mr. Jindal said the firm is working to get all the regulatory approvals, "which is a long process." 

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