Essar seeks to shed SEZ tag for Hazira steel project

Written by Rituparna Bhuyan | New Delhi | Updated: Nov 27 2009, 05:42am hrs
Essar Steel has sought denotification of its 247-hectare steel-based SEZ in Hazira, Gujarat, citing dismal conditions of the export market for the metal. The company is understood to have told the board of approval (BoA) for SEZs that it would want the under-construction steel project to be a normal industrial unit. The board, headed by commerce secretary Rahul Khullar, is likely to take up the matter on December 15.

As per its original plan, Essars Hazira SEZ was to see investments in excess of Rs 10,500 crore. The zone has four units under construction. The SEZ was notified in September 2006. Essar Steel is the largest exporter of flat steel products from India and has an installed capacity of 9 million tonne per annum (MTPA).

In its submission to the BoA, Essar said all the four units in the SEZ has opted out of the SEZ. The steel major maintained the units were set up in the SEZ to consolidate steel exports due to the buoyancy seen in 2006. The company said it would be difficult to achieve the intended levels of exports from the zones due to the global downturn.