Projects of industrial manufacturers in Odisha face hurdles

Bhubaneswar: When one after another industrial manufacturers are facing difficulties in setting up bases in Odisha, obvious questions arise about the future of industry in the state.

After signing a MoU with the state government to set up a 12-million-tonne capacity steel plant in Keonjhar at cost of Rs 40,000 crore in 2006, the world’s no.1 steelmaker ArcleorMIttal scrapped its proposed project in 2013.

Despite the company chief LN Mittal’s visit to the state and having discussions with government official, the company pulled out of the project citing delay in land acquisition and mines allotment.

Vedanta’s alumina refinery plant in Lanjigarh of Kalahandi district is also facing difficulties to run due to scarcity of raw materials. The firm’s chief Anil Agarwal met Odisha’s CM Naveen Patnaik four times, the outcome is assurances only.

Though gram sabhas approved six million tonnes expansion of the plant, the state government is yet to allot mines.

Posco, South Korean steel behemoth, signed an agreement with the state government nine years back for establishing eight million tonnes project in first phase, but it is yet see the light.

The state government has been able to provide 1700 acres of land to the company as against the requirement of 2700 acres for setting up of initial phase of the project.

Besides, after cancellation of coal block allotments companies who have invested in power sector will face setbacks in running plants in the state.