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Fresh MoU with Posco soon

The chairman-cum-managing director (CMD) of Posco India, Yong-Won Yoon, on Friday expressed the hope that the State Government would soon hand over the remaining land required to start the first phase of the proposed steel plant to be set up by the company near Paradip.

Posco-India chief managing director Yong-Won Yoon met chief minister Naveen Patnaik following which he said he was hopeful of his company’s MoU with the state government being renewed soon.

“We had a fruitful discussion on renewing the MoU with the state government. Now, it will be put on the chief minister’s table. The state government will have to take a call on the issue,” said Yong-Won, indicating that the company was ready to go ahead with the project once the formalities had been completed.

However, Yong-Won described the visit as “courtesy call”. The MoU between the state government and Posco-India, which was signed on June 22, 2005, expired in 2011. Since then, the MoU has not been renewed because of a number of obstacles.

However, steel and mines minister Rajanikant Singh said: “Instead of renewing the MoU, a fresh one will be signed.”

The South Korean steel major is pinning hopes on the state government for handing over of 2,700 acres of land to enable it to start work on an 8 MT-capacity plant in the first phase.

“Until when the land will be acquired, we are not sure. But the recent mining case (SC order on Khandadhar lease) going in favour of us and the state government taking positive initiatives to clear the land, we are hopeful that the land will be handed over to us soon”, said Posco India chairman.
CMD of Posco India Yong Won Yoon
“Land acquisition has almost reached its final stage and only 47 acres are left to be acquired for the project,” said a senior government official.

Asked when is the MoU going to be renewed, Yoon said the Chief Minister will take a final call on this. He, however, hoped that a decision will be taken soon. The Posco-India CMD was also not sure when the process of land acquisition will be completed.

Replying to a question, the Posco-India CMD said the company has already started corporate social activities in the area. “Since its a big project, we need to plan a proper CSR master plan and accordingly we will implement it,” he said.

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