Economy

Steel prices likely to go up further in Oct

PTI Mumbai | Updated on March 12, 2018

Domestic steel majors are expected to hike prices further in October on the back of a likely upswing in industrial and infrastructure construction activities, according to a CMIE report.

“We expect steel companies to hike prices in October-November once industrial and infrastructure construction activity gathers pace,” the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) said in its monthly review.

In FY’12, the agency expects finished steel prices to average 7 per cent higher than in 2010-11. It also noted that steel prices have already risen nearly 15 per cent in the first quarter of the fiscal.

However, the CMIE has sharply scaled down its growth forecast for finished steel production for the fiscal from 12 per cent to 9.5 per cent.

“The downward revision is due to the lower-than-expected growth in demand for steel in the first quarter and a shortfall of iron ore likely to be faced by the steel units in Karnataka,” it said.

Earlier, the Tata Steel Managing Director, Mr H.M. Nerurkar, had said domestic steel demand was likely to grow at about 9 per cent during the current fiscal. The steel giant expects prices to remain stable, with the prices going up or moving down by Rs 1,000 a tonne for some time.

“India will remain a net importer of steel despite concerns on growth in other markets,” he had said recently.

Iron ore prices are ruling high due to the ban imposed by the Supreme Court on mining in Bellary and a huge demand for the commodity from China, the report said.

Most companies have signed coking coal contracts for the September quarter at $315 a tonne, which is 40 per cent higher than the year-ago level.

It may be recalled that on July 29, the Supreme Court had suspended iron ore mining in Karnataka’s Bellary district.

“If the ban continues for long, the plants located in Karnataka will have to cut down production,” the CMIE said.

Finished steel consumption grew by a paltry 1.9 per cent during Q1. “Although production grew 12.5 per cent in June, a 7.8 per cent growth for the June 2011 quarter was below expectations,” the report said.

Published on August 23, 2011

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