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US Exim bank reverses stance on sasan umpp

Press Trust Of India  |  Washington 

Extends $600-million loan guarantee to Reliance Power

The has agreed to extend a $600-million (Rs 2,793 crore) loan guarantee to Anil Ambani-led Reliance Power’s ultra mega project at Sasan in Madhya Pradesh.

Last Thursday, the Export-Import Bank of the United States (US Exim) had rejected a request from the company to finance the $4.5-billion (Rs 20,949 crore) project at Sasan on environmental grounds.

The 3,960 mega watt (Mw), coal-fired power project is projected to emit 26,000 to 27,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per annum.

The loan guarantee is for US-made mining equipment that has contracted to purchase from Wisconsin-based Bucyrus International.

The sales agreement was contingent upon the Indian company receiving US Exim-supported financing.

“I’m glad the US Export-Import Bank has reversed its decision and extended loan guarantees to Bucyrus International Inc,” said Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, who is the ranking Republican on the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and

Sensenbrenner, who had written to President Barack Obama, seeking his support for the US Exim loan guarantee, said: “This will create hundreds of jobs for Milwaukee (in Wisconsin) residents. But we shouldn’t let the reversal obscure the bad policy that led to it.”

However, he slammed the “job-killing cap-and-tax agenda” of the US Government. “If President Obama continues to push a job-killing cap-and-tax agenda, job losses will be a thousand times worse,” he said.

Cap-and-tax is a measure taken to encourage green jobs.

Sensenbrenner, who is considered an influential lawmaker, quoted the National Association of Manufacturers as saying the cap-and-tax would cost the economy more than a million manufacturing jobs over the next two decades.

Several US lawmakers had also written to US Exim, stating denial of loan guarantees to Bucyrus International would kill about 1,000 American jobs.

“We are very pleased with the decision of the US Export-Import Bank to change course and support this project,” Bucyrus CEO Tim Sullivan said.

“This is great for Bucyrus, but more importantly, it is great to be keeping this work in the US and providing job opportunities across 13 states,” he added.

First Published: Fri, July 02 2010. 01:10 IST