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11. April 2012

India and Afghanistan sign pact on iron and steel

Xinhua reported that India and Afghanistan Monday signed an agreement for enhancing cooperation in the field of iron and steel.

MoU was signed by Indian minister for steel Mr Beni Prasad Verma and Afghan minister for mines Mr Wahidullah Shahrani.

Mr Verma, while terming India Afghan relations very old and cordial, said that India would invest in all of Afghanistan's economic sectors, particularly in iron, copper and petroleum.

Mr Shahrani described the signing of agreement as very significant for capacity building in iron and steel sector while calling on the Indian companies to invest in Afghanistan's mineral sector.

Afghan Iron and Steel Company, a 7 member Indian consortium includes SAIL, RINL, NMDC, JSPL, JSW, JSW Ispat and Monnet Steel & Power.

That the Hajigak iron ore deposits sit at a height of 3,800 meters, practically half way up Mt Everest, will be the least of the challenges if the deal is inked. Afisco was chosen preferred bidder for its promise to throw in 1,000 MW power plant, 6 million tonne per annum steel plant and lay 200 kilometer rail line from mine to plant.

Sourced from Xinhua

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