Putting behind the bitter experience of steel major POSCO’s unsuccessful bid to set up a plant in Odisha, South Korea has evinced keen interest in forging a new relationship in investment and business with the State.South Korean Ambassador Shin Bong-kil, who led a business delegation, met Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and key functionaries of the industries department here on Monday.“Recognising the State’s potential in natural resources, POSCO had made $12 billion investment commitment in 2005 to set up a steel plant in the State — it was not only the single largest overseas investment by a South Korean company, but also the single largest foreign investment ever made in India,” said Mr. Shin.‘Fast-growing State’Observing that POSCO’s mega investment had faced many hurdles, he said: “I understand both sides have learnt from POSCO’s experience and now need to make a fresh start. Odisha is a State growing very fast.”The delegation included representatives of Samsung, Hyundai, Kia and LG. Commenting on the slowdown in the automobile sector, the Ambassador said: “I think the phenomenon is temporary. Things will improve shortly. Korean automakers, however, have been doing very well in India.”Addressing the delegation, Mr. Patnaik said, “The Republic of Korea and Odisha have many possibilities to collaborate across identified focus sectors. We are in the process of promulgating a strategy document, Vision 2030, to ensure that 50% of the primary metal produced in the State is value-added within the State.”“Odisha is also fast emerging as the petrochemicals and chemicals hub where Korea has natural strengths. We welcome Korean investments in these and other sectors,” said Mr. Patnaik.
Goalkeeper of Mexico Guillermo Ochoa during a training session at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil. (AP Photo)Mexico coach Miguel Herrera says he’s happy to be lucky if that means advancing in the World Cup.Mexico wraps up Group A play against Croatia, whose star midfielder, Luka Modric, said that Mexico benefited from some luck in its scoreless draw with Brazil last week.Herrera indicated that he’d rather be lucky than lose 3-1 to Brazil, as Croatia did.”If we have a draw with Brazil with luck or without it, we did it, they didn’t,” Herrera said.Mexico needs only another tie against Croatia to advance to the second round, while the Croatians must win.After practice Sunday night, Herrera and defender Hector Moreno appeared at a news conference where they generally avoided opportunities to respond to some of the verbal jousts issued earlier in the day by Modric and Croatia coach Niko Kovac.Kovac suggested that his side has the requisite caliber of attacking players to become the first to score against “El Tri” and goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa in this World Cup, adding that “if anyone’s knees should be trembling,” it should be those of the Mexicans.”We could talk about 1,000 things here, and we could go through 1,000 circumstances that would lead us to believe that one (team) is better than the other,” Herrera said. “What we have to do is prove it on the pitch.”Mexico has played a World Cup in which we’ve proven we have an attitude of determination. It is a robust team. It is a team that has not conceded goals. It is a team that is doing things right.”advertisementMexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa has posted a pair of shutouts against Cameroon and Brazil, needing a slew of spectacular saves to keep the Selecao from scoring.He could be challenged again by a Croatia side that is coming off a 4-0 victory over Cameroon, and which has several key players – from Bayern Munich striker Mario Mandzukic to Real Madrid’s Modric – who have put together successful careers in Europe’s top leagues.Mexico defender Hector Moreno, who plays for Spanish side Espanyol and has faced Modric in La Liga play, said Mexico has no lack of respect for Croatia’s talent, “but Mexico also has great individuals and we have a great team.”Moreno added that he’s “not attaching a great deal of importance” to comments made earlier Sunday by Modric and Kovac.”We will see everything on the pitch,” Moreno said. “We will see on the field who has better players and who has a better team – and I fully trust it will be Mexico.”For Herrera, the fact that Croatia has a number of players from top European leagues should provide that much more motivation for El Tri to show the world – and European scouts at the World Cup- what Mexican football is all about.Thus far, Mexico has managed just one goal, scored by Oribe Peralta in a 1-0 victory over Cameroon. Manchester United striker Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez not only has yet to score, but hasn’t cracked the starting lineup, instead coming in as a second-half substitute. Herrera said he isn’t planning any changes to his lineup, meaning Hernandez will open a third straight match on the bench.Both teams practiced on wet turf at Arena Pernambuco because of intermittent showers throughout Sunday, and more rain was in the forecast for Monday. Herrera joked that Mexico seems to have brought ran with it wherever it has traveled in Brazil. But El Tri has also brought fans – lots of them.A cruise ship with several thousand Mexican supporters aboard is docked in the port of Recife, and many more have been seen throughout town.Herrera said he’s expecting a heavily pro-Mexico crowd to push his players.”Of course, we have the idea, the feeling of what people in Mexico are going through, with the dreams that we’ve created,” Herrera said. “We will come out onto the field to give everything so we can obtain the objective we have set before us.”