Mittal warns that delays raising costs of India projects

New Delhi, Sept 10 : Arcelor Mittal is facing cost overruns for its projects in India because of delays in securing regulatory approvals, and is looking to expand in other emerging markets, said its chairman, Lakshmi Mittal, today.

Arcelor Mittal, the world''s top steelmaker, had said it would invest 20 billion dollars over the next 10 years to build two steel plants in Jharkhand and Orissa to produce about 25 million tonnes of steel in total.

Addressing reporters here, Mittal said the costs could rise by about 50 percent because of delays in getting the necessary approvals and mine allocations,

He said the total cost of these projects may rise up to 30 billion dollars. He urged Governments of Jharkhand and Orissa to expedite the approval process.

"The delays are not because people do not want, there are delays because there is process delay. We have signed MoU long before. We expected things to move faster, it has not moved faster. We don''t know when we start the project. We are in the process of expediting all the approvals," Mittal said.

Mittal further said that despite these delays, Arcelor Mittal remained convinced about its growth prospects in India and is looking for more greenfield opportunities. It also hoped to expand its business in other emerging markets, including Mexico and Brazil. (ANI)