‘Go for value addition to lower steel imports’

PTI New Delhi | Updated on January 09, 2018 Published on August 29, 2017


India should cut down its dependence on special steel product imports through value addition and form JVs with global leaders for technological know-how, Union Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh said today.

The minister said that the government is taking a slew of measures to boost domestic consumption of steel. These include procurement of steel silos by Food Corporation of India (FCI) and promoting newer uses of steel in toilets, construction and other areas.

“Value addition is a major area which needs our attention. Inspite of being world’s third largest steel producer, we are still dependent on imports for some steel products. We need to develop technologies to produce electrical grade and auto grade steel in India, so that we are self sufficient in these products,” Singh said at Steeling India 2017 workshop organised by CII here.

He said value additions should be in such a fashion that products become competitive in global market and consequently leading to higher steel exports and earn better prices.

“Transfer of technology for production of automotive steel and other special steels will be facilitated by helping set up JVs with global leaders in such products,” he said, adding that domestic firms will be encouraged to have strategic joint ventures and the steel ministry will support research institutes within the country to develop such technologies.

Underlining steps to promote usage of steel for new area like crash barriers, steel toilets and pre-fabricated structures, the minister said that the FCI is coming out with tenders for procuring steel silos and the road ministry has been urged to encourage its use in housing and highways projects.

Singh stressed that India should have an institute on par with Canadian Institute of Steel Construction.

“To ensure raw material security, two-pronged strategy has been adopted—setting up of coal washeries and optimising pellet utilisation that will help reduce dependence on imports,” he said.

“Coal India Ltd (CIL) and Bharat Coking Coal have agreed to set up 12 new coking coal washeries by 2019–20. CIL is also working on acquisition of coking coal assets, increasing domestic production and minimising diversion of coking coal to thermal plants,” Singh said.

National Steel Policy

Terming National Steel Policy an effort to steer the industry to achieve its full potential, he said its aim is to make India self-sufficient in steel output by targeting crude steel production of 300 million tonnes by 2030–31 at an investment of Rs 10 lakh crore.

“The steel demand is projected to reach 230 MT by 2030–31, while policy envisages per capital steel consumption to reach 160 kg by 2030,” he said.

“It has been my endeavour in the Ministry of Steel to take forward the ‘Make in India’ vision of the Prime Minister. Fiscal 2018 has begun well for steel industry. We have registered 3.8 per cent growth in steel production in first quarter, compared to same period last year. Consumption of steel has increased by 4.4 per cent,” he said.

The minister said that the government’s endeavour is to bring a 100 per cent quality regime in steel sector and 33 steel products have already been notified under the mandatory quality certification mark scheme for BIS and 75 per cent of steel products are now covered under the BIS regime.

He also stressed on the need for environment conservation and zero waste. He said,“RINL has started an environment friendly 120 MW power plant which used waste gases discharged from its coke ovens and blast furnaces.”

“Ministry of Steel and UNDP have worked together for energy conservation in 300 secondary steel units. Plans are on to upscale to 1,000 secondary units in the country,” he said, adding that the government is also promoting use of scrap in the steel industry.

The minister said that MSTC has launched MSTC Metal Mandi and RINL has signed a pact with them for selling steel through online medium in North India. He also said that this is one of the steps done to take steel to the masses.

“Inter-ministerial task forces and committees have also been constituted to suggest ways for enhancing steel usage,” he said.

Published on August 29, 2017
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