AM/NS plans Rs 50 k cr investment to expand Hazira Plant capacity to 18 mt

AM/NS India, formerly Essar Steel, plans to more than double its production capacity at its Hazira plant to 18 million tonnes a year with an investment of Rs 50,000 crore.

In the first phase of the expansion, the company is planning to add an additional 3-5 mt to its existing 7 mt capacity by the end of the current fiscal, Dilip Oommen, chief executive officer of AM/NS told ET in an interaction.

The development comes three years after two of the world’s largest steelmakers, ArcelorMittal and Nippon Steel came together to acquire Essar Steel for Rs 42,000 crore in one of the largest stressed-asset deals in the country in December 2017.

“The immediate plan is to reach 8.6 million tonnes; we will be expanding from the land we have and some land we acquire from the government,” Oommen said. “We can go up to 18 million tonnes in Gujarat with the committed investment of Rs 50,000 crore.”

He said the investments will be in a phased manner, the pace of which will depend on how fast things move. Capital will be less of an issue than getting all the approvals in place, he said.

The company is also eyeing opportunities in Odisha for a greenfield project.

“In today’s time, every passing day is a lost opportunity if we do not have enough capacity,” Oommen said.

“The transition period for AM/NS after takeover of Essar was when Covid also hit us, so we are today proud to say that in spite of the challenges in managing the Covid and the transition, we are able to focus on growth,” he said.

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Arcelor Mittal, led by L N Mittal, is one of the largest steel manufacturing companies headquartered in Luxembourg City and Nippon Steel is a manufacturer of special grade steel from Japan.

Their collaboration will help bring new products to the Indian steel market, Oommen said.

He said the new capacity the company is building will make all the new-age products, including the best of automotive and best of solar panels. “Some of it is not there in India today,” Oommen said.

The company is also keeping a close watch on mergers and acquisitions.

“We are willing to look at divestments of some public sector steel companies,” Oommen said. “And we will be studying SAIL units and RINL, too. In all our expansion projects, we will be looking at environmental sustainability.”



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