Special Correspondent

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The joint venture between Steel Authority of India Ltd. (SAIL) and the State-owned Steel Complex will take off on Saturday with the signing of a memorandum of understanding and laying of the foundation stone for a rolling mill.

Industries Minister Elamaram Karim told presspersons here on Tuesday that Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan would inaugurate the joint venture at Kozhikode. Union Minister for Steel, Fertilizers and Chemicals Ram Vilas Paswan would lay the foundation stone.

Half of the 88 per cent of the equity held by the State government and the Kerala State Industries Development Corporation would be transferred to SAIL. SAIL would invest Rs. 50 crore for the construction of the rolling mill with a capacity for producing 5,000 tonnes of thermo-mechanically treated steel.

Plans were being prepared for diversification into areas such as production of special steel.

Mr. Karim said the development would speed up industrialisation of the Malabar area.

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