India to be second largest steel producer by 2013

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    Feb 16, 2009
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    Business Line : Industry & Economy News : India to be second largest steel producer by 2013: Minister

    India will emerge as the second largest steel producer by 2013 with an installed capacity of 120 million tonnes, said the Steel Minister, Mr Beni Prasad Verma, on Tuesday.

    At present, India is the fourth largest steel producer with a capacity of 80 million tonnes, while China tops the list.

    “By 2013, India will be the second largest steel producer in the world, riding on the high levels of growth, construction, housing, real estate, automobiles and agriculture,” Mr Verma told the 5th India Steel Summit.

    The steel demand in the country is growing at an average of 10 per cent, which may exceed even 12 per cent in the near future. In order to meet the domestic demand, steel production capacity must increase at an average of 10-15 per cent, Mr Verma said.

    Various government social schemes such as NREGA and Indira Awas Yojana are expected to bring about development resulting in increased steel consumption, Mr Verma said.

    The Steel Secretary, Mr P.K. Misra, said capacity addition should be fast tracked to make the country self reliant in meeting future demand. The greenfield projects in the pipeline have not taken off as per expectations due to issues relating to land acquisition and resource allocation.

    Land acquisition has of late become the most contentious and challenging issue.

    “The Government has been weighing various options and we are expecting a policy directive anytime soon,” Mr Misra said.

    However, Mr Misra suggested that the industry should look at acquiring the land directly from the owners.

    “Land acquisition at market rate through direct negotiations should be accepted as a reality, where the role of the Government may be limited only to providing regulatory and statutory assistance,” Mr Misra said.

    Considering the challenges faced by the industry, the Government is planning to come out with a New Steel Policy by the year-end.

    “The New National Policy and vision document on Steel Sector will project a medium-term horizon of 10 years and also a long-term vision of 25 years,” Mr Misra said.

    The Ministry has set up four task forces to look into the issues relating to demand, technology, transportation and infrastructure issues. These task forces are expected to submit their reports by December.
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