Sparks fly as molten steel is poured from a ladle at an arc furnace in the steel melting shop of the JSPL plant in Raigarh, Chhattisgargh, India. (Photographer: Udit Kulshrestha/Bloomberg)

JSPL Hopes To Bring Down Debt By Up To Rs 5,000 Crore This Year

Jindal Steel & Power Ltd. hopes to reduce its debt by Rs 4,000-5,000 crore in the current financial year led by higher operational income and asset monetisation.

Growth in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation per tonne, however, is expected to stay flat. The company can sustain Ebitda per tonne at Rs 12,800 this year, NA Ansari, chief executive officer at JSPL, told BloombergQuint in an interview.

JSPL’s losses for the quarter ended March widened sixfold but ebitda per tonne rose 30 percent year-on-year to Rs 12,871, driven by higher volumes. The company expects volumes of 9 million tonnes this year, compared to 5.7 million tonnes in the year ended March 2018. Of this, the company’s “Indian business is expected to produce around 7 MT while Oman business is expected to deliver the remaining 2 MT,” Ansari said.

Also read: JSPL March Quarter Losses Widen Sixfold Due To One-Time Payment

Power Woes Continue

The power business, however, continued to remain under pressure due to lack of availability of coal “ at reasonable rates”.

We expect the pain to continue for the power business for a few more quarters till the government moves the needle further on commercialisation of coal mines which ensures availability of coal at reasonable rates.
NA Ansari, CEO, JSPL

Other key highlights from the interview:

  • Spread between raw material and cost of finished product up by 43 percent in FY18.
  • See capital expenditure requirement for FY19 at Rs 400-500 crore; spent most of capex for Angul ramp-up last year.

Shares of the company were trading 6.38 percent down at Rs 245.10 at 2.13 p.m. on the NSE.

Watch the full interview here: