Major steel companies like SAIL and RINL are in midst of massive expansion plan to increase production of steel : Beni Prasad Verma
The Union Minister of Steel, Shri Beni Prasad Verma has said that the Steel Industry in India which contributes over 2% to the GDP is expected to become the 2nd largest producer of crude steel in the world by 2015. Chairing the meeting of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee attached to his Ministry here yesterday, he said that Steel capacity in India has increased from 66 Mt in 2008-09 to 89 Mtpa in 2011-12. The functioning of National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) was the agenda of the meeting. Shri Verma said that the per capita steel consumption has risen from 38 kg in 2005-06 to 55 kg in 2010-11. The Minister stressed on the importance of conserving iron ore resources in the country for long term use by the domestic steel industry. He said that major steel companies like SAIL and RINL are in midst of massive expansion plan to increase production of steel. He also informed that the expansion of Salem Steel Plant of SAIL and major packages of RINL expansion plan have been completed. The Minister informed that for promotion of steel sector the following steps have been taken recently:- (i) National Steel Policy 2005 has been reviewed and the New ‘National Steel Vision’ will be finalized soon. (ii) A roadmap on R&D and Technology has been prepared with focus on beneficiation, pelletization, coal ash reduction, etc. (iii) New techno-economic bench marks have been evolved on International pattern for improvement in performance of PSUs. (iv) Steel Innovation Committee has been formed in the Ministry for promotion of innovative ideas in steel sector. NMDC is a Navratna PSU under the Ministry of Steel which is India`s largest iron ore producer presently producing about 27 Mt of iron ore. NMDC is also involved in exploration of wide range of minerals including gold, lime stone, dolomite, gypsum, diamond etc. NMDC has the only mechanized diamond mine in the country with a capacity of 1.00 lakh carats per annum at Panna, Madhya Pradesh. The company is setting up a 3 MTPA capacity Steel Plant in Chhattisgarh and has signed a MoU with Russia’s third largest steelmaker, Severstal for a Greenfield Steel Plant in Karanataka. It has acquired 50% equity in Legacy Iron Ore Ltd., Australia. NMDC is also part of SAIL led Consortium, which won the status of ‘Preferred Bidder’ for mining exploration rights at Hajigak, Afghanistan, having reserves of around 1770 Million tonnes of iron ore. NMDC is a consistent profit making and dividend paying Navartna company. NMDC’s Net estimated Profit for the year 2011-12 is Rs. 7100 Crores, an increase of more than 9% over last year. Some of the members complimented NMDC on its continued profitability and asked the company about the progress of its proposed Steel Plant in Nagarnar. Members asked the company to lay more stress on corporate social responsibilities and improve the access of people in backward areas to basic amenities. The committee members appreciated the increase in export duty of iron ore to 30% which has led to reduction in exports. The members also spoke on issues like allotment of mines, need for synergy between steel PSUs and need for better facilities of housing etc for employees posted in mines. Members of Parliament who attended the meeting; Shri Devji M. Patel, Shri Ghanshyam Anuragi, Capt. Jai Narain Prasad Nishad, Shri Jeetendra Singh Bundela, Shri Premchandra Guddu, Shri Rakesh Sachan and Shri Premdas Katheria from Lok Sabha and Shri Nandi Yellaiah andTapan Kumar Sen from Rajya Sabha. Additional Secretary and Financial Advisor, Ministry of Steel, Shri S. Machendranathan, other senior officials of the Steel Ministry, CMDs of Steel Public Sector Undertakings also attended the meeting.