After having already invested 1 billion USD in Tamil Nadu, the company, which is still trying to get out of legal tangles over environmental issues in the state, is readying itself to pump in fresh investment of 700 million USD in the state, Bharat Joshi, British Deputy High Commissioner Chennai, said on Tuesday.
Sterlite has been facing flak for some time now with the environmental concerns being played up in an emotionally charged way.
To a question on whether a stand could be taken, or an evaluation of the environmental damage can be assessed based on facts, Joshi said, “There has to be a formal request from the local government.”
It is a matter under the jurisdiction of the authorities concerned, as the sovereignty of the country had to be factored in. “We are not in the business of telling them.
Vedanta is an integral part not only for us but for India’s supply chain as well, given the offtake volume of 10 to 15 per cent. It wants to grow in Tamil Nadu. The decision must be taken by the government. It is under arbitration.
The adjudication process is underway. We will wait for the outcome before we take any steps,” he said, highlighting the importance of the company in the growth of TN and the industrial base of India.
Given the importance of the company in terms of production of copper which is hugely import-driven, most of the industries, such as mobiles, electrical parts, refrigerators, washing machine, have had to bear the brunt in terms of cost for using copper. On the back of production stoppage for a month, costs have shot up.