Posco Postpones Planned India Steel Plant ChinaFotoPress, Getty Images

Posco Postpones Planned India Steel Plant

Just a day after promising to halve its domestic businesses, the South Korean steelmaker announces reconsideration of a new $12 billion plant.

SEOUL — Posco, the world’s fifth-largest steelmaker, announced Friday it will place a $12 billion steel project in India on hold, as part of the restructuring of its bloated business structure at home and abroad.

Posco, which has 48 subsidiaries under its wing, promised Thursday to cut the number of its domestic-market businesses by half, jettison 30% of its overseas operations, and liquidate unprofitable non-core businesses.

On Friday, Posco said it was reconsidering the project in eastern India, which was launched in 2005 but has made little progress due to delays in getting clearances and acquiring land from local residents.

“As the project has been in trouble for a long time, we will not take any further aggressive action,” a Posco spokeswoman said. “However, it does not necessarily mean our company will completely abandon it.”

India’s environment ministry gave its renewed go-ahead to the plant only in early 2014, but doubts remain over clearances required for a dedicated port, as well as fresh land acquisitions.

A major obstacle has been the opposition from environmental campaign groups, including Greenpeace and some local activists.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2015

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