Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday said Rourkela will be developed as a manufacturing hub of steel.
Addressing media persons on the second day of his three-day visit to the Steel City, Pradhan said about four lakh tonne of primary and secondary steel of Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP) is consumed as raw-material by the local ancillaries. In the next 18 months, the target is to make it 10 lakh tonne to double the economy of Rourkela.
“I will discuss the issue with authorities of MSEM, banking and related departments of the Union Government. Rourkela will be developed as a manufacturing hub in the backdrop of cut in Corporate Tax. We will have to take the collective leadership,” he said. Stating that recession has hit the steel industry globally, Pradhan said the SAIL is effectively facing the challenges and India’s crude steel production would be raised to 300 million tonnes per annum from 140 million tonnes per annum by 2030.
Allaying the fear of shortage of iron ore after March 2020, the Minister said the Central Government has allowed SAIL to act as a merchant miner to extract 25 percent more iron ore and dispose of its 70 million tonnes of low-grade iron fines including value-addition of fines lying idle at SAIL mines. The move would ensure adequate availability of iron ore to address the disruption of 2020, benefit the secondary steel industries and also ease the prevailing financial burden of SAIL.
Pradhan further informed that SAIL has been instructed to start wage negotiation of the workers. On the slums that have come up in territorial jurisdiction of RSP, he said after a meeting with Sundargarh district administration, the RSP management has been asked to prepare a master plan to help blending the encroached land with PMAY (Urban) to settle the slum dwellers.
Earlier in the day, Pradhan visited the RSP and held a review meeting. He called for fast-tracking the projects to ramp up production and greater regional development.
He also stressed on leveraging digitalization in the functioning of the plant. Interacting with the customers, Pradhan emphasized on creating more consumption centers in and around Rourkela.
Sundargarh MP Jual Oram, Birmitrapur MLA Shankar Oram, SAIL Chairman AK Chaudhary, Joint Secretary (Steel) Puneet Kansal, SAIL Directors Soma Mondal and Atul Srivastava and RSP Chief Executive Officer Dipak Chattraj accompanied the Minister.