Steel imports dip, Centre retains minimum price

The government has announced the continuation of minimum import price on 66 steel items, providing a breather to the domestic industry, which has already got relief through decreased imports this fiscal.

“Even though the Indian Steel Association (ISA) had requested six months’ extension, the continuation of MIP for two months will also aid in strengthening India’s domestic steel market and reducing the distress of companies through introduction of fair play in competition,” Sanak Mishra, ISA secretary general said.

An ISA release said that trade remedial measures, especially MIP, had brought a 35 per cent decline in import of finished steel in April-August 2016-17 at 3 MT, compared with the same period a year earlier. Imports were mostly from three Asian countries, it said.

Declining imports

Declining imports along with growth in user industries such as automobiles, electrical appliances and infrastructure sector are expected to lend a boost to steel companies. Domestic steel demand is likely to grow 5.3 per cent this fiscal to reach 85.8 million tonnes, ISA president Sajjan Jindal had said, while releasing the short-term domestic steel demand figures for September.

“The government’s intervention is timely and critical,” Mr. Mishra said.

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