Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], September 14 (ANI/ATK): A Rs 2000.00 per MT addition to the cost of HRC in recent times is cause for celebration in the I & S industry that has seen prices drop as low as Rs 55000.00 in the domestic market, a far cry from the high of Rs 75000.00 being offered in the international market as recently as March 2022 before the GOI brought in export duties to stem the exports in favour of domestic industries.
Local industries, including infrastructure, need HRC in some form or the other for their growth justifies GOI. This is despite the international markets being lucrative in the present and Europe being on edge with its steel plants going off the grid in the absence of gas from Russia to heat furnaces besides other activities.
A glut in the local market due to the turn of events, plus sluggish demand from industry (a spillover from the covid-induced lockdown), sees inventories pile up with producers. These factors have depressed the prices of various forms of steel, including HRC, bringing it as low as Rs 50000.00 to 55000.00.
That said, industries in India, including Automotives, FMCG, and Infrastructure, see this as an opportunity to buy raw materials at competitive prices and could be the reason behind the jump of Rs 2000.00 PMT. According to Steel Expert Vedant Goel of NEO Mega Steel, this development could be termed "a silver lining" for India's iron and steel industry and would be most visible around Diwali time with record sales by automobile companies and FMCG. 'This development would have a positive impact, as automobile FMCG companies have faced tough times in the last two years, such prices of HRC were necessary to ramp up production in anticipation of good times ahead/bumber Diwali' he says.
This is a very significant and positive move for the infrastructure sector too when India is building its infrastructure be it world-class multi-lane express highways, long tunnels, complex structures including bridges and culverts, and today even high-rises, adds steel expert Vedant Goel from Neo Mega Steel.
As for the steel producers themselves, authoritative sources in the trade indicate that the government has clarified that this, i.e., taxing steel exports, is something they would reconsider depending upon the stakeholders' interests, both producers and users within the country and worldwide.
In a macro sense, India is among the rare exporters of steel that has all the advantages from the best of mines to significant, mature, and lasting internal markets to the best of foundries and steel mills. Today, it has an international scenario that adds to its list of positives with steel units in Europe shutting shops in the absence of gas to power their furnaces that came from Russia a while back.
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