Our Bureau

Mumbai, Sept. 1

INDIAN steel companies have increased the prices of various steel products by around Rs 500 per tonne on the back of firming international prices. Tata Steel said it has raised the prices of hot rolled (HR) steel products by Rs 500 per tonne on spot basis. Steel Authority of India Ltd has hiked the prices of various steel products by Rs 500 per tonne on an average, the company's spokesperson said. "We take a review of steel price constantly first by finding the pulse of the market,'' he said.

"HR prices have been hardening globally and the markets are ready for a price increase,'' said an official of a steel company. Prices in the world market have been edging up as stocks declined and demand picked up.

Essar Steel also increased prices by three per cent, which would be in the range of Rs 600-700 per tonne depending on the grade. It has 300 grades of steel products on offer. Company officials said input cost increases and declining stocks allowed for price increases. However, demand is strong at this juncture.

Ispat Industries said it has increased the prices of HR and some other value-added products by Rs 500 a tonne. Uttam Galva Steels Ltd, exporter of galvanised steel, said it has increased prices by Rs 2,000-3,000 per tonne.

"Demand for our products is increasing and we are in a position to increase prices of our galvanised and cold rolled steel,'' Uttam Galva said in a news release.

Shares of Tata Steel moved up to Rs 393.45 on the BSE from the previous close of Rs 390.65. SAIL shares rose to Rs 63.15 from Rs 62.05.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 2, 2005)
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