For the first time, the Ministry of Steel will be giving away awards to the secondary steel sector on 13th September 2018 at a function in New Delhi. The awards have been instituted in order to encourage the secondary steel sector as it plays a key role as a growth engine for the national economy and employment generation.

Strong performance of the secondary steel sector has added muscle to India’s steel production. Encouraged by the overall potential, the Government of India has taken various initiatives to improve the performance of this sector. A few such initiatives are – supporting energy efficiency projects (Energy conservation and control of GHG emission) and R&D activities, strengthening institutional support, protecting domestic producers from below-cost import from foreign countries through antidumping measures, launching of an award scheme to recognize and encourage progressive units for adopting energy-efficient technologies and innovative measures.

Based on the present growth pattern, it is expected that India will rise to the second position after China. The National Steel Policy 2017 has set a target of 300 million tonnes per annum of production capacity by 2030. The production capacity in 2017-18 has already reached 137.97 million tonnes (MT).

One of the most significant aspects of the secondary steel sector is that it reaches out to millions of people in the rural areas, meeting rural demand. Growing in conjunction with the primary steel sector, the secondary steel sector holds enormous potential for growth and opportunities in the country. This sector has certain specific advantages over the primary steel sector such as lower capital and land requirements and the capability to produce special sections and customized products. With these abilities, the sector is bound to play a major role in actualizing the growth target of 300 million tonnes of steel production capacity by 2030.

The secondary steel sector comprises various sub-sectors such as sponge iron units, EAFs, IF units, re-rolling mills, cold rolling mills, galvanizing units, wire drawing units, and tinplate producers with annual production capacity of less than 1 million tonne and they meet the country’s demand for value added steel products.

From a modest beginning with a small steel rerolling mill (SRRM) unit in 1928 in the industrial town of Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, the industry grew impressively in different parts of country over the years. By 1968, this sector grew to produce nearly 5 million tonnes of steel annually. Kolkata in West Bengal, Mumbai in Maharashtra, and Mandi Gobindgarh in Punjab were the initial three clusters of the secondary steel sector in the country. With the advent of induction furnace (IF) melting units in the early eighties, the sector further expanded in the country in cluster mode with a wider entrepreneurship base.

India has achieved 103.13 million tonnes in 2017-18 against the production of 97.94 in the year 2016-17. Per capita consumption of steel is also steadily increasing and has reached about 69 kg Per capita today

World crude steel production in 2017 registered a growth rate of about 5.3% as compared to the previous year. The global production in 2017 stands at 1691.2 million tonnes. With about 6% share in the total world crude steel production, India occupies the third position behind China and Japan. The steel industry in India contributes nearly 2 per cent to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

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