Vedanta inks MoU to invest Rs.200 bn in Bengal

March 13th, 2008 - 12:42 am ICT by admin  

Kolkata, March 12 (IANS) Vedanta Aluminium Ltd, a unit of Vedanta Resources Plc, Wednesday said it would invest Rs.200 billion (nearly $5 billion) to set up an aluminium smelter with a capacity of 650,000 tonne annual production and a 3,000 MW power plant in West Bengal in Burdwan district. “The aluminium complex would come up at Bidhanbag and it’s expected to be completed within the next three years,” Vedanta Aluminium Ltd chairman Anil Agarwal said at a press conference here.

The company has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation (WBIDC) to set up the aluminium complex to encourage downstream industries in the aluminium sector.

“The power plant would be developed in two phases of 1,500 MW each. It would supply power to the aluminium smelter as well as to a number of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) there in the complex.

“The total Aluminium Park would be developed over 1,000 acres of land,” Agarwal said, adding that 217 acres of land was already available with Vedanta Aluminium and the rest would be given by the state government.

He pointed out that aluminium was the third most abundant metal on earth and the world’s second most used metal after steel. The current global consumption of aluminium is 40 million tonne, which is expected to double by 2020.

The present Indian market of aluminium, in terms of consumption, is around 1.2 million tonnes annually, which is expected to grow at around 10-12 percent a year.

Vedanta Resources Plc has a current market capitalisation worth $13.7 billion. The principal operation of the firm is located across India with further operations in Zambia and Australia.

Vedanta presently produces aluminium, copper, zinc and lead. Recently, it also acquired India’s largest producer-exporter of iron ore, Sesa Goa Ltd.

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