57 MoUs with 27 companies under the PLI Scheme for speciality steel to generate over 60000 jobs, sates Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia

This is expected to generate an investment of about Rs 30,000 crore, create an additional capacity of 25 Million Tonnes of specialty steel within the next five years.

Autocar Pro News Desk By Autocar Pro News Desk calendar 20 Apr 2023 Views icon3563 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp

India's steel industry is poised to lead global growth as the nation emerges as an epicentre for the sector's evolution, according to the Minister of Civil Aviation and Steel, Jyotiraditya M. Scindia. Addressing the Ministry of Steel, Ministry of Commerce, Government of India and FICCI’s exhibition and conference - India Steel 2023, he highlighted the country's rapid ascent in steel production, with a growth of 6 percent CAGR over the last decade and a predicted an 11-12 percent increase in consumption levels in the coming years.

"We have already emerged as the second largest steel producer in the world, and our per capita steel consumption has gone up from 57kg to 78kg during the last nine years. This proves our mandate to become a powerhouse of manufacturing and increase the share of Steel in GDP from 2 to 5 percent,"  Scindia said.

The Minister pointed to four key factors contributing to the sector's growth: collaborative efforts between the government and industry, the strengthening of national infrastructure, a focus on green steel production, and the adoption of new technologies.

He revealed that the government recently signed 57 MoUs with 27 companies under the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme for specialty steel. This is expected to generate an investment of about Rs 30,000 crore, create an additional capacity of 25 million tonnes of specialty steel within the next five years, and provide over 60,000 job opportunities.

At FICCI India Steel 2023 Sindia also highlighted the government's commitment to producing green steel and reducing the sector's carbon footprint. "We are taking appropriate steps to make the steel sector more green and sustainable," he said, stressing the need for recycling and promoting the circular economy within the industry.

He also spoke about the importance of embracing technology and innovation to fast-track the steel sector. Scindia mentioned the formation of two Advisory Committees, one for Integrated Steel Producers and another for Secondary Steel Producers, to ensure the active participation of stakeholders in decision-making.

"I strongly believe that as the next era of growth belongs to India, within India, the next era of growth belongs to the steel industry," said Scindia, urging stakeholders to come together to drive the sector's success and achieve the nation's ambitious goals.

Tackling Low-Grade Iron Ore and Consumption Disparity
At FICCI India Steel 2023, Union Minister of State for Steel and Rural Development, Faggan Singh Kulaste highlighted three critical topics for discussion during the conference, the first being the utilisation of low-grade iron ore. Kulaste urged industry professionals to process and utilise low-grade iron ore within the country for steel production, saying, "It will result in creating employment opportunities, capital investment, and boosting the economy."

Addressing the significant consumption gap between urban and rural areas, Kulaste pointed out that steel consumption in rural areas is only one-third of the national average. He emphasised the importance of bridging this gap by understanding rural needs, informing and training rural populations about steel products, and implementing similar programmes. Lastly, Minister Kulaste encouraged the secondary steel sector to adopt technology to enhance competitiveness and create more job opportunities.

Challenges Facing the Indian Steel Industry
In his opening address, Subhrakant Panda, President, FICCI, emphasised the importance of the steel industry in facilitating India's growth story. "Steel is the building block of new India and indeed a vital component in the nation's economic development," he stated. However, the Indian steel industry faces several challenges that need to be addressed to achieve its ambitious growth targets, such as decarbonisation and the dependence on the import of coking coal.

He added that decarbonisation is a crucial objective for the steel industry, with the government and private sector working together to develop a roadmap for the sector to transition to low carbon emissions. Furthermore, he noted, "Supportive policies and a conducive regulatory environment will enable the steel industry to overcome challenges and leverage the opportunities arising out of the significant growth trajectory that India is embarking upon."

Steel Consumption Records Tremendous Growth
Nagendra Nath Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Steel, emphasised that the steel industry has experienced a growth rate of 12.7 percent in the past year alone, with steel consumption rising from 105 million tons in 2021-22 to 119 million tons in 2022-23. Further, while alluding to the domestic benefits of a thriving steel industry, Secretary Sinha emphasised the potential for international cooperation. He pointed out that India's steel sector could play a crucial role in addressing other countries' development and infrastructure needs while working towards a more integrated global economy.

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