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Fri, Dec 22, 2006 - Page 10 News List

Arcelor Mittal set to build new plant in eastern India


The world's largest steelmaker Arcelor Mittal was set to sign a US$8.7 billion project with the Orissa government yesterday to build a steel plant in the eastern Indian state, officials said.

The first Indian operation of the Netherlands-based company, which acquired European steelmaker Arcelor in July, was approved by the state government late on Wednesday.

The 12-million-tonne plant "will offer 5,000 direct jobs and give a huge boost to our economy," Provincial Industries Minister Viswabhushan Harichandan told reporters after the project was approved by a high-level committee.

The plant will be set up in two phases in Orissa's mineral-rich Keonjhar district, some 300km northwest of the state capital Bhubaneshwar.

Harichandan said yesterday that Arcelor Mittal will be given 3,200 hectares of land for its project, which will also include the construction of a 750-megawatt power plant.

Separately, Japan's Nippon Steel Corp said yesterday it has raised its stake to become the top shareholder in Brazilian steelmaker Usiminas amid global expansion by the the Arcelor Mittal behemoth.

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