The Steel Ministry is learnt to have sought Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s intervention for imposition of 20 per cent export duty on iron ore shipments.

“Yes, Steel Minister Virbhadra Singh has written a letter to the Prime Minister seeking imposition of a minimum of 20 per cent ad valorem export duty on all grades and varieties of iron ore to curb its export,” a senior steel Ministry official said.

At present, there is a 10 per cent export duty on iron ore lump and 5 per cent on iron ore fines.

Earlier, the steel ministry had sought the duty structure to be doubled in the Union Budget 2010-11, but the demand was not met.

The ministry had also written to the Finance Minister on March 12 requesting imposition of a flat 20 per cent duty on iron ore exports.

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