India’s Jindal plans to broaden its investments in Oman and has earmarked $400m to spend on the Shadeed Iron & Steel plant it operates in Sohar.

The company has said that it plans to invest a further $400m in the Shadeed plant in the next two years, which would take the total investment to about $864, with the $464 it paid to the UAE’s Al-Ghaith Holdings.

MEED reported in March the steel shop and billet caster will be built at the Shadeed plant, as well as a rolling mill that makes long products such as bars, rods and wires (MEED 25:3:11).

Jindal also say that the third phase would look at the possibility of building a 7 million tonne-a-year pelletisation plant.

“Building a pelletisation plant makes sense for any steel company that makes its own DRI (direct reduced iron), but in Oman gas will definitely play a factor is any expansion plans,” says a steel source based in the Middle East.  “There are other companies planning pelletisation plants and they have previously said that gas is a problem.”

Bahrain’s Gulf United Steel Holding Company (Foulath) and Brazil’s Vale are both planning major pelletising plants in Oman. Vale’s $1.35bn plant is nearing completion, but the Foulath facility is still in the planning stages.