SAIL easy on short-term plans, long term in doubt
In the times of economic slowdown, public sector steel major Steel Authority of India Ltd has decided to move ahead with its Rs 54,000-crore expansion plans.
SK Roongta, SAIL’s chairman told, “All our short term expansion plans are on track and though there is a liquidity crunch around the world, we will raise whatever capital is required at the appropriate time. Half of the Rs 54,000 crore needed to ramp up capacity to 26.2 million tonnes from the current 15 million tonnes would be through external borrowings.”
However, at the industry chamber FICCI's executive meeting in Kolkata on Wednesday, Roongta informed that before the next fiscal year, the capital would not be raised.
With prices falling by more than 30 per cent over the past three months and signs of a cycle reversal seen in the industry, SAIL is quite careful on the long term. This means that there is a good chance that the company's 2020 target of achieving a target of 60 million tonnes could get affected.
Roongta further said, “There is uncertainty in the global demand supply situation and our two main sectors which demand steel— construction and automobiles — are not doing too well. Our medium and long term expansion plans which are not firmed up will have to be re-looked and aligned with the demand situation.”