Tata Steel gets Odisha govt nod for SEZ at Gopalpur

Tata Steel’s plan to set up a special economic zone (SEZ) near its close-to-completion steel plant in Odisha is taking shape, with the State government clearing the bottlenecks.

Speaking to BusinessLine, Odisha Industries Minister Debi Prasad Mishra said the company earlier had problems in sub-leasing land to prospective investors in the proposed SEZ, as Odisha did not have the required policy provisions.

"In our last Cabinet meeting we made a provision in the law to sub-lease land to investors for 99 years. The company should start a road-show in China and other places by October. It has appointed Ernst & Young to scout for an investor," he said.

Initially Tata Steel had wanted Odisha to notify the entire 2,900 acres it has in Gopalpur as an SEZ, but the government restricted it to 1,250 acres to start with, he said.

Though the metal industry is in doldrums across the world there is immense interest to set up manufacturing units in India, especially after the buzz over the Make in India campaign, and the country’s ability to withstand global turmoil, said Mishra.

The Minister has been hand-picked by Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to boost investment in the State.

Tata Steel plans to invest Rs. 2,500 crore to develop infrastructure at the SEZ, and Rs. 800 crore to set up a ferro chrome plant on 400 acres.

The company’s much-delayed 3 mtpa steel plant at Kalinganagar is set to be commissioned by the December quarter.

It has already invested about Rs. 22,000 crore of the planned Rs. 25,000 crore in the first phase of the proposed 6 mtpa plant.

According to Mishra, the State government is working to resolve the crisis faced by Vedanta, which shut its aluminium plant at Lanjigarh, rendering 2,000 workers jobless.

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