The future of steel industry indeed lies in India which is blessed with
abundant mineral resources including iron ore and non-coking coal.
With acquisition of coking coal mines by Indian companies in countries
like SouthAfrica andAustralia, India is claiming her rightful place at the
2nd largest Steel Producer in the league of nations.
However, the million dollar question is which steelmaking route should
we adopt? Is it the DRI-EAF route or do we choose the traditional BF-
BOF route? Is COREX or FINEX the right answer? Choosing the right
technology, ensuring the supply of adequate raw materials and
creating sustainable demand are key issues which will decide the fate
of Indian steel industry. A comparative analysis with countries like
Brazil, China and Russia would also help the Indian industry in
assessing the potential and growth prospects.
Steel prices have risen significantly in the recent past in anticipation of
recovery in demand and production. As far India and China are
concerned, there is real demand. China and India are showing real
demand growth. China has registered over 90% demand growth and
India has been at the level of 9-10% and it is picking up. India’s steel
consumption rose by 6.8% during April – November 2009 over the
same period a year ago on account of improved demand from sectors
like automobile and consumer durables. On the other hand, India
accounts for around 5% of the global steel consumption. Almost 70%
of the total steel used is for kitchenware. However, its use in railway
coached, wagons, airports, hotels and retail stores is growing
immensely. The demand has shrunk considerably the world over the
extent of 25%. As far as price correction in November is concerned,
domestic prices were more than international prices. India’s steel
production reached 28.49 million tones in April – September 2009. In
2008-09, production of finished (carbon) steel was 59.02 million tones.
Significantly, state-owned steel maker, SAIL, which reported a net
profit of US$ 571 million in January-Jun