Mumbai / Bhubaneswar April 20:
Steel Industry should get priority and ‘must be integrated with captive iron ore mining for sustainable growth’, said Manish Kharbanda, Executive Director & Head of Mines & Minerals, Jindal Steel & Power Ltd, while speaking in ‘India Steel 2017’ Conference today at Mumbai.
In his address on ‘Interplay of Demand & Supply of Raw Materials in Steel Industry’, he stressed on preferential treatment to Steel Industry in mining auction.
Speaking on Interplay of Demand & Supply of raw materials in Steel Industry, “Auction of Iron ore blocks for merchant mining should be done after the steel plants are equipped with captive mines”, he added. In auction, most iron and steel plants cannot compete with merchant miners on account of their heavy debt, worsened by low demand and price in the past years.
The state governments need to conduct faster auction and make sufficient numbers of mineral block available to steel sector based at the respective states to build competitive strength of manufacturing sector. In order to promote scientific mining, larger blocks of mining should be allocated.
Speaking on pricing of Iron ore, Kharbanda said that since more than 75% of the Steel plants do not have captive mines and are dependent on merchant miners, the government should take step to make iron ore available at competitive price. The royalty rate of Iron ore is one of the highest in the World and should be reduced. The government should take steps to ensure iron ore prices to be as competitive as possible for steel companies. “A price band may be set within which iron prices would be allowed to fluctuate or a cost plus formula may be adopted such that all iron ore miners would have to adopt in setting their market selling price,” he said.
‘India Steel 2017’ is being organised by the Ministry of Steel, Government of India and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) to provide a platform to stakeholders and key decision maker from the steel and other related industry to interact with and explore new business avenues.