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Friday, Nov 24, 2006

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ICICI Bank may lend Rs 750 cr to White Field Paper's SEZ

Our Bureau

Rajahmundry , Nov. 23

The ICICI Bank's special economic zone division is considering a long-term loan of Rs 750 crore to the special economic zone — White Field Paper Mills Ltd — coming up at Kovvuru in West Godavari district.

According to Mr T. Srinivasa Rao, the Chairman of the company, it is the first SEZ in the paper sector being set up in the country. The mill, being set up at a cost of Rs 1,200 crore, will have the capacity to produce 2 lakh tonnes per annum. The company has taken possession of 271 acres of land out of a total of 500 acres allotted to it.

Mr Rao said the machinery would cost Rs 900 crore, land and building Rs 100 crore, other fixed assets Rs 100 crore, and the rest would be used as working capital and for technical know-how. The mill would begin production in 2008.

He said the company had signed a memorandum of understanding with Elof Hansson Group, Sweden, for supply of wood pulp. He expressed hope that the ICICI would grant the loan and as an alternative the company was also approaching the Hansson group for supplier's credit.

Mr Rao said the financial closure may be achieved by the end of the year. The Elof Hansson group would supply pulp and also buy back the finished product — high quality coated paper, special variety of printing paper.

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