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JSPL plans to set coal fired power plant in Liberia

11 Sep 2013

Jindal Steel & Power is planning to set up a coal fired power plant in the West African country of Liberia. The project will consist of two units of 175 MW each at an investment of $200 -$250 million, Naveen Jindal chairpman JSPL group said.

The Jindal group investment is likely to be routed through its arm, Jindal Africa. On Tuesday, the Naveen Jindal group signed a term sheet agreement with government of Liberia for the proposed power project during the on going state visit of the Liberian president Ms. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to India.

During the day, the president visited JSPL's steel plant at Raigarh and Jindal Power's 1000 MW unit at Tamnar in Chhattisgarh. Speaking to mediapersons the president, a Nobel Peace laureate in 2011, said Liberia would 'explore all possibilities to work with the group in other areas.'

The presidential visit and her remarks will serve as a major shot in the arm for Mr Jindal who is eyeing acquisition of a large iron ore mine in Liberia. It also comes at a time when he is facing allegations of receiving unfair allotment of coal mines.

The coal for the power plant will likely be sourced from Mozambique where Jindals own a mine and have already started production or from South Africa where the group has significant presence.

The power will be sold at a cost of 15 cents (US) at nearly a third of the cost of power generated by DG sets in that country. Mr Jindal's plans in Liberia form part of a larger plan to set up a series of smaller sized power projects across African states like Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Botswana.

Miffed by criticism in the ongoing coal scam, he said it is perhaps a bit easier and definitely 'more fulfilling' to see these investments come to light in countries which clearly appreciate such entrepreneurial effort much more than those at home.

Source: The Economic Times