Bhubaneswar, Oct 18 (UNI) The sixth Board meeting of World's fourth largest steel producer, POSCO, to be held in New Delhi tomorrow, assumed much significance in view of the inordinate delay in the execution of company's proposed mega steel plant in Orissa.
POSCO had signed a MoU with the Orissa government in June 2005 to set up a 12-million-tonne steel plant near Paradip at an estimated cost of Rs.51,000 crore, considered to be the largest FDI in the country so far.
But the company has been facing stiff resistance from the people of three panchayats likely to be displaced by the project. Neither the state government officials nor the POSCO officials have been able to enter into the project area to conduct the preliminary survey work.
Twice in the past the POSCO officials were abducted by the villagers fighting against the project under the banner of the POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samittee(PPSS). Three senior POSCO officials from South Korea and another executive from India were kept hostage for more than six hours at Dhinkia village by the PPSS activists for entering into the project area.
They were, however, released after the local police gave an undertaking that the POSCO officials would not be allowed to enter in the project area.
POSCO sources here said the Board consisting of six standing Executive Directors, including POSCO Chief Executive Officer Ku-Taek Lee, Senior Executive Vice President and Chairman-cum-Managing Director POSCO-India Soung-Sik Cho and nine independent Directors would be meeting in New Delhi to review the affairs of the company.
The board members and senior executives would also visit the POSCO-India corporate office here to review the progress of its steel plant project which also included setting up of a captive port close to Paradip.
Mr Lee during his visit to India is scheduled to meet and discuss the progress of the project with high-level officials of both the central and Orissa government.
The Company is keen to start its first integrated steel plant outside Korea in Orissa. The proposed 12 MTPA mega Greenfield project is intended to develop the economy of the state and living standard of the people and is considered as most strategic to maintain POSCO's competitive edge and leadership in the global steel industry.