SAIL looking overseas

By SiliconIndia   |   Thursday, 23 November 2006, 06:00 Hrs
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Kolkata: Foreign expansion plans are going strong for the country’s largest steel maker, Steel Authority of India (SAIL) reported Business Standard. The steel major has planned to form an overseas subsidiary though it is yet not certain whether SAIL is currently looking to acquire any steel asset. The news comes after Union Steel Minister, Ram Vilas Paswan recently asked SAIL to concentrate on international assets for expansion.

The lookout for raw material deposits in the mineral-rich foreign countries has been on for quite sometime now and a foreign subsidiary would help keep the bureaucracy at a distance.

The move is quite similar to the ONGC model. Here the country’s largest oil and gas company controls its foreign business through its foreign subsidiary, ONGC Videsh.

The PSU had talks with a few companies with the purpose of picking up a stake in coal blocks and the locations could be South Africa or Australia. SAIL officials also visited Oman recently as a part of a delegation and were exploring the possibility of picking up equity in limestone mines.

With overseas steel acquisitions, SAIL could leverage iron ore mines. The company has access to the largest iron ore belt in Asia, Chiria, estimated to have reserves in excess of 2 billion tonne. This news comes after SAIL’s recent announcement to invest around Rs 5000 crore for developing new mines
in the four mining blocks of Orissa, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh.

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