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Hoa Sen Group seeks to withdraw from US$10 billion Ca Na steel project

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HCMC – Hoa Sen Group is seeking partners to transfer all of its capital contribution at the US$10 billion Ca Na steel complex project in the south-central coast province of Ninh Thuan, with a transfer price of not less than the investment the group has made into the project.

At the board of directors meeting on July 21, Hoa Sen leaders revealed that they are withdrawing from the project because the current situation is no longer suitable with the initial goal and the group wants to focus on its traditional strengths including corrugated iron, steel and plastic.

The group will disband six affiliates that were founded to develop the project including the Hoa Sen Ca Na – Ninh Thuan International General Port Company, the Hoa Sen Ca Na – Ninh Thuan Industrial Zone Infrastructure Development Company, the Hoa Sen Ca Na – Ninh Thuan Steel Complex Investment Company, the Hoa Sen Ca Na – Ninh Thuan Cement Company and Hoa Sen Quy Nhon JSC.

The Hoa Sen board of directors said they would ask the chairman and vice chairman to work with partners who have a strong financial capability and are developing projects in Ninh Thuan to accelerate the transfer.

The Ca Na steel project requires an investment of over US$10 billion and will have an annual capacity of 16 million tons. It has been included in the steel industry development plan till 2025 with a vision to 2035 by the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

When the project was proposed in 2016, it sparked controversies over possible marine environment pollution.

In April 2017, the prime minister asked the Ninh Thuan Province government to suspend the project, explaining that it was poorly planned, as it did not provide sufficient information, data and assessment.

At the annual shareholders’ meeting in January 2018, Le Phuoc Vu, chairman of Hoa Sen Group, said the project was undergoing legal procedures to register for investment and working with partners to choose suitable technology and machinery.

In April 2018, the Ninh Thuan Province government approved the first phase of the Ca Na – Ninh Thuan General Port project. It will cover over 314 hectares with three ports capable of receiving 20,000-100,000 DWT ships. In November 2018, the province approved the scale 1/500 detailed zoning plan for the project.

By Viet Dung

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