Sanjeev Gupta plans for massive Australian steel plant

Liberty Primary Steel, part of Sanjeev Gupta’s GFG Alliance, announced major steps towards the transformation of the alliance’s Whyalla steelworks, signing contracts worth more than AUD 600M.

GFG Alliance has also contracted China Metallurgical Group Corporation (MCC) to run a feasibility study into building a new steel plant in Whyalla, capable of producing 10 million tonnes a year, almost double Australia’s current steel production. The projects include an upgrade to modernize the current 60 year old steelworks and bring its capacity up to 1.8 million tonnes a year.

“What is critical is we will make value-added steel, not just a commodity, but things that add value,â€? Gupta said.

The new Liberty Next-Gen Steel plant would be designed to produce 10 million tonnes per year, with room for further expansion, and would be the most advanced and biggest of its kind in the developed world.

It would also be supported by a 400MW co-generation plant to deliver power to the facility and also deliver surplus power to the South Australian energy grid.

The announcements strengthen Gupta’s position in South Australia, which began last year when the British billionaire’s company Liberty House purchased the struggling Whyalla Steelworks from Arrium.

“Whyalla is a place with all the natural resources required to make steel, we have the best natural resources for renewable energy,  great infrastructure including a unique port and we have a workforce who is willing to fight for its destiny.â€?

He announced his plans at a ceremony attended by the town’s residents as well as the Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison, the Leader of the Opposition Bill Shorten and the Premier of South Australia Steven Marshall.