Production of Iron Ore is sufficient to meet the Current demand, says Dharmendra

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By Our Correspondent

NEW DELHI/BHUBANESWAR: Union Minister of Steel, PNG Dharmendra Pradhan in the Lok Sabha in reply to an Unstarred Question on Monday said that the production of iron ore in the country is sufficient to meet the current demand/consumption of iron ore by domestic steel industry. However, the entire demand of coking coal is not met from domestic production as the availability of high-quality coking coal (low-ash coal) in the country is limited and thus no option is left but to resort to import of coking coal.

As regards coking coal, during 2018-19 the total demand of coking coal for steel industry was 58.37 MT.  Out of this, 51.83 MT were met through imports, 1.6 MT was provided by Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL) and Coal India Limited (CIL) and remaining was catered by captive collieries of SAIL and TATA Steel.

Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL): SAIL is focussed on maximising sales through existing and new markets. There are continuous efforts to improve upon the customer services. During 2018-19, saleable steel sales were 14.11 Million Tonnes. In the current financial year 2019-20 till Dec, 2019, the saleable steel sales are about 10.7 Million Tonnes, which is a growth of about 7.7% over CPLY. SAIL has made efforts to improve customer services through introduction of new brands of reinforcement Bars & Parallel Flanged Structurals, Digital Payment Methods, Door-delivery, Incentivisation of local MSMEs around its Plants etc.

SAIL has also exported various products to new international markets. Some of the initiatives taken towards higher customer satisfaction for export markets are:-

Commencing operations from Paradip Port for exports

Increased number of containerized shipments for catering to smaller sized export orders.

RashtriyaIspat Nigam Limited (RINL): RINL policies are directed towards enhancing its presence in the steel market while supplying quality steel to the customers.  For providing fillip/boost to the steel consumption in rural India, pro-active campaign is made to highlight usage of RINL products & their advantages in the community infrastructure in rural & semi-urban areas.

RINL regularly supplies steel products to many MSME units, including SSICs & NSICs, engaged in the manufacturing sector. Besides, RINL has a large network of Manufacturers, Project customers & Retailers to cater to the steel requirements across the country. RINL is giving emphasis and thrust on exports.

To improve the existing process & products and also to develop new products, RINL interacts with its customers on regular basis and takes their feedback and requirement.

It is expected that at the current rate of GDP growth, the steel demand will grow around threefold to reach a demand of 230 Million Ton by 2030-31 as projected in the National Steel Policy 2017.

Government has brought Domestically Manufactured Iron & Steel Products Procurement (DMI&SP) Policy, Steel Scrap Policy, Steel Import Monitoring System (SIMS) alongwith Government’s push for better infrastructure such as railways, roads, ‘Housing for All by 2022’, piped water to every household etc. to enhance steel demand.  To meet increasing demand, market mechanism will operate in the deregulated steel sector.

Steel industry is a deregulated sector and the role of the Government is that of a facilitator. The decision regarding introduction of world class latest technologies are essentially taken by the respective iron and steel companies based on techno-economic considerations. Ministry of Steel is actively promoting R&D in environment friendly technologies for steel making, he added.

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