Iron ore exports dipped by over 28 per cent to 40 million tonnes in April-November this fiscal following ban on shipments of the key steelmaking raw material from Karnataka and subdued output in Goa.

Iron ore exports were over 55.5 million tonnes in the year-ago period, according to the data released by industry association Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI).

“The decline in exports of iron ore is due to a number of reasons. The Karnataka ban comes on the top. Also, several mines in Goa are closed and the Orissa Government has stopped giving export permits,” FIMI Secretary General R. K. Sharma told PTI.

Iron ore shipments from Karnataka, a major exporter of the raw material, have been stopped since July, last year, following allegations of widespread corruption.

Production of iron ore in around 45 mines is closed due to environmental reasons, Mr. Sharma said, adding that in Orissa, an informal ban on exports was in place.

Iron ore exports were not positive since the beginning of the current fiscal as compared to the corresponding period of the last fiscal.

The most glaring fall was in August, when it came down by nearly 45 per cent to 2.6 million tonnes from 4.7 million tonnes. November was equally bad as shipments dipped by nearly 44 per cent to 4.7 million tonnes from 8.3 million tonnes recorded in November 2010.

India, the third largest global exporter of iron ore, had exported 97.64 million tonnes of iron ore in the last fiscal, down from 117.3 million tonnes in 2009-10.

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