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Sharmili Mallick

Bhubaneswar: Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL) chairman Naveen Jindal once again knocked the doors of Odisha Government seeking intervention in shortage of coal and steep increase in prices of iron-ore which is directly affecting the operations of his company in the State.

Jindal met Odisha Chief Secretary, Aditya Prasad Padhi at the State Secretariat in Bhubaneswar in this regard. Jindal apprised Padhi about the challenges faced by the company due to shortage of coal and increase in prices of iron ore in the past three years.

“There are a lot of challenges in availability of coal. India has the fifth largest reserves of non-coking coal in the world. Despite this, there is shortage of coal and Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL) needs to increase its production. Since India does not have any captive coal blocks and is dependent on Coal India and its subsidiaries, they must ensure coal is available in abundance,” said Jindal after the meeting.

Similarly, iron ore is also available in abundance in the country but its prices have more than doubled. The state government must resume mining, added Jindal.

Sources said JSPL will invest an additional sum of Rs 50,000 crore in Angul so that it can achieve the target of producing 20 million tonne steel by 2030.

“From 2021 we want to embark on a new journey where we want to take the capacity of Angul plant from 6 million tonnes to 20 million tonnes by 2030 and that will coincide with the India Government’s steel policy of producing 300 million tonnes of steel by 2030,” said Jinal.

We have already planned to achieve the targeted 20 million tonnes of production in the next 12 years, Jindal added.

Earlier on July 27, the JSPL chairman had met Padhi seeking urgent intervention of Odisha government over operational problems faced by his two plants due to shortage of coal and higher iron-ore prices.

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