KIOCL opposes move to impose export duty on pellets

Our Bureau Bangalore | Updated on December 24, 2013 Published on December 24, 2013

State-run KIOCL Ltd (formerly Kudremukh Iron Ore Co Ltd), a leading pellet manufacturer in the country, has said it’s opposed to any move to impose export duty on iron ore pellets.

The company urged the Steel Ministry to take up the issue with the Finance Ministry. It is seeking incentives on pellet export to earn foreign exchange at a time when the rupee is depreciating against the dollar.

Earlier, industry body Assocham had urged the Centre to impose 30 percent export duty on iron ore pellets, fines and lumps with immediate effect to increase iron ore availability for the domestic steel industry.

Malay Chatterjee, Chairman and Managing Director of KIOCL, said the company has already taken up the issue with the Commerce Secretary to facilitate 100 per cent export oriented units (EOU) such as KIOCL incentives for pellet export to earn foreign exchange.

“The claim made by Assocham that export duty would improve availability of pellets within the country is baseless and incorrect. In fact, the Government, while raising the export duty on iron ore fines and lumps from 5 per cent and 15 per cent to 20 per cent and then to 30 per cent, removed export duty on pellets recognising it as a value-added product,” he said. Chatterjee added that very little pellet export has taken place after the levy of Distance Based Charge was imposed by the railways on iron ore transported through the railway network for manufacture and export of pellets. This levy has rendered pellets produced in India totally unviable in the international market.

India exported 2.1 lakh tonnes of pellets in 2011-12 and no quantity in 2012-13. In fact, India imported pellets as it was more attractive. It imported 8 lakh tonnes of pellets during 2011-12 and 14.7 lakh tonnes during 2012-13.

“KIOCL, with a strong brand image in the international market and being an export-oriented unit, stopped export of pellets for more than two years,” claimed Chatterjee.

The pellet production capacity in the country is continuously increasing and is likely to touch 80 million tonnes a year by 2014.

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Published on December 24, 2013
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