Taiwan firm to up investment in Vietnam steel complex to $28.5 bil

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G round being broken for the Formosa Ha Tinh steel complex in late 2012

Formosa Plastics Group, one of Taiwan's largest industrial conglomerates, plans to increase investment in its steel complex in the northern province of Ha Tinh to a whopping US$28.5 billion, which would make it the country's largest FDI project.

News website VnEconomy reported Tuesday that if this is approved Formosa Ha Tinh would surpass the $27-billion oil refinery planned by a Thai firm in the northern province of Binh Dinh.

The Formosa plant in the Vung Ang Economic Zone, now worth $9.9 billion, will get three more blast furnaces in addition to the existing three, and its annual capacity will triple to 22.5 million tons of steel.

Work on the plant's first phase began late last year with an initial investment of $7.9 billion. Earlier this year the Taiwanese firm received approval to increase it to $9.9 billion.

It plans to install the three blast furnaces by 2015 and complete the plant by 2017.

The complex will consist of the plant, a deep-water port capable of handling vessels of up to 300,000 DWT (deadweight tons), and a 2,100-megawatt power plant.

At around 3,300 hectares, including 1,300 ha of water, it will be the largest steel complex in Southeast Asia.

Ha Tinh authorities said the plant, once fully operational, is expected to create around 10,000 jobs.

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