SAIL to invest Rs 1.36 B to boost steel plants

Thursday, 27 March 2003, 08:00 Hrs
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State-owned Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) will invest 1.36 billion to boost production at two of its plants which are expected to reap profits after decades.

NEW DELHI: The Board of Directors of the company approved two projects "with an aim to strengthen the production performance of SAIL's integrated steel plants at Durgapur and Rourkela," a statement said Wednesday.

"Both these plants are looking to make profits in the current financial year. Durgapur Steel Plant (DSP) is entering the zone of net profit after 25 years and Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP) is on the threshold of achieving cash profit," the statement added.

The SAIL board has granted approval on principle for installation of a 130-tonne ladle furnace in the steel melting shop of DSP to further improve both the quality and volume of the plant's main product, continuously cast (CC) billets.

All major production units of DSP are presently operating above their rated capacities, with the CC unit at 126 percent.

"Expected to cost 233.3 million, the ladle furnace will not only help to achieve better control of temperature and steel chemistry but production of special grades of steel as well. By significantly reducing energy consumption, the furnace will also contribute to lowering DSP's cost of production," the company stated.

The project will be implemented on turnkey basis and completed by October 2004.

SAIL's Ranchi-based Centre for Engineering and Technology (CET) is the consultant for both the projects.

The second project for rebuilding coke oven battery (COB) at the Rourkela plant is expected to cost 1.13 billion and will be completed by April 2005.

Rebuilding of the 21-year-old COB has been long overdue, the last having taken place in April 1979. The battery was put down in December, 2000 to comply with CPCB norms and dismantled in April last year.

The SAIL Board also approved plans for rebuilding the battery into an environment-friendly one in four packages, with participation of international companies that are leaders in pollution control technology.
Source: IANS

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