Steel prices fell about 40 per cent to ₹57,000 a tonne in the domestic market over the last six months on subdued export orders in the wake of the 15 per cent export levy, according to SteelMint.

In early 2022, the prices of hot rolled coils (HRC) started showing an upward trend. It had become a matter of concern for the user industries as movements in steel prices have a direct impact on real estate and housing, infrastructure and construction, automobile, and consumer goods.

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The steel prices in the domestic market peaked at ₹78,800 per tonne in April. After 18 per cent GST levy, the price was about ₹93,000 per tonne, the research firm said.

The prices started to fall from April-end and came down to ₹60,200 per tonne towards the end of June, according to SteelMint data.

It continued to fall in July and August and came down to ₹57,000 per tonne by mid-September.

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SteelMint cited "Government tax on steel products, subdued overseas demand, and high inflation and energy costs" as the reasons for the fall in steel prices.

All prices are excluding 18 per cent GST.

On the outlook, it said domestic HRC prices to remain range-bound in the next quarter. As steel exports are likely to remain less than usual and inventory pressure is likely to sustain, mills are unlikely to increase the prices over the next two months. On May 21, the Government hiked the duty on exports of iron ore to 50 per cent and a few steel intermediaries to 15 per cent. It also waived customs duty on the import of some raw materials, including coking coal and ferronickel, used by the steel industry.

The move was aimed at increasing the availability of these raw materials for domestic manufacturers. 

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