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India steel production, demand may grow at 7 percent

May 13,2019

N Baijendra Kumar, CMD, National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) said the domestic steel production and demand are expected to grow at 6-7 percent, at a time when production and consumption in major countries such as China, Japan, and the European Union nations are likely to stagnate in the near future.


“India is at the bright spot in the steel world as the government push on infrastructure sector will ensure that target set in the steel policy 2017 will be achieved. The per capita consumption of steel, steel production capacity is increasing in line to meet the National Steel Policy target of 300 million tonnes by FY31,’’ he said while addressing the Iron Ore Week (IOW) at Singapore, organized by SCX India.


Incidentally, NMDC has earmarked Rs 3,000 crore as CapEx for this year and has set a production target of 31 million tonnes without Donimalai mine. For FY19, the production is 32.5 million tonnes.


“Currently, about $14-$15 billion worth of investments are underway in the steel sector that would substantially increase the country’s steel-making capacity. NMDC is fully geared to meet the increased iron ore demand and is investing in mines and evacuation to augment capacity to almost double in the next three to four years. NMDC is India’s largest producer of iron ore and 10th largest in the world. It has the best quality ore with highest Fe content in the world, and more than adequate reserves to cater to India’s enhanced needs,” Kumar said.


He said Indian ore was cheaper by 50-55 percent than the imported variety, which gives Indian steel industry a great competitive advantage. NMDC is also exploring the opportunity to export tailings from Bailadila sector as current international prices of ore would make it feasible and profitable to do so. Bailadila is a complex comprising two large surface mines — Bacheli and Kirandul — and is approximately 374 km from Raipur, Chattisgarh. The company is also in a process of laying a 15 million tonne per annum slurry pipeline from Bacheli in Bailadila iron ore complex to Vizag port.


On the sidelines of the event, NMDC CMD also assured that the state-controlled mineral producer has fully geared up to take over any mine that may be offered to it in any state.


NMDC operations are comparable to the best in the world. On several indices like the cost of production, employee cost, performance, they are comparable with international giants such as Vale, Rio Tinto, FMG, etc. It has also an excellent track record on environmental protection, social responsibility, and regulatory compliance.