Essar reiterates plans to produce steel on the Range

The Hibbing Daily Tribune reports that the Essar Steel Minnesota project near Nashwauk is making progress (subscription link). This according to statements at a public meeting between local officals and Essar represntatives. The company’s commmunication with the people of the region, who have underwritten much of the infrastructure, has been lacking, however.

The meeting was called by Rep. Tom Anzelc, chair of the Iron Range legislative delegation, to quell recent fears that progress seemed slow. Speculation about Essar’s expansion of steel operations at plants near Sault Ste. Marie in Michigan and Canada had many, including me, envisioning a taconite-only plant at Nashwauk. Essar reiterates that it will make steel on the Iron Range.

I enjoyed Rep. Carly Melin’s characterization of the Essar site as having “Area 51” qualities. With road construction on 65 I have been driving past the site on Itasca Co. Highway 58 often and must say that activity there does seem to move at an odd pace.

It is my analysis that Essar will either become a major player in North American steel, or it will be known as the company that made too many promises. This Times of India news report details Essar’s commitments to Sault Ste. Marie about port expansions near its Algoma facility. The company also has major initiatives in Africa and the Middle East.

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