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Surge in India's steel imports

Published: 11th Apr, 2024


The Indian steel industry has expressed concern over India becoming a net importer of steel in 2023-24, saying it is a “warning signal” for India which strives to become Atmanirbhar.

1: Dimension- Reason behind the surge
  • Predatory imports: India’s steel industry faces threat from predatory imports. Restricting steel imports is crucial to safeguard investments and ensure robust GDP growth.
  • Ease of availability: The surge in imports illustrates a broadening appetite for foreign steel products in India due to their ease of availability and wide range of specifications available across various price points.
  • Export taxes: In 2023, following the introduction of export taxes on steel and stainless steel by the Indian government, the export share was only 6.5%.
  • Red sea crisis impact on exports: The crisis in the Red Sea hit Indian steel exporters particularly hard and caused their logistics costs to explode. 
2: Dimension- Required Measures:
  • Arrest predatory imports: There is need for a trade remedial action on an urgent basis to arrest the inbound shipments.
  • Increase duty: India needs to remove lesser duty on steel import, as it helps importers and other steel-surplus country for supporting their own steel mills, while India suffers in expanding steel capacity.

Fact Box

  • India has registered a 38 per cent surge in imports of finished steel to 8.319 million tonnes (MnT) over 6.022 MnT imported during the preceding 2022-23 fiscal.
  • The surge in predatory imports from China is a big threat to the Atmanirbharta in steel.
  • Under the National Steel Policy, India aims to scale up its annual steel production capacity to 300 million tonnes by 2030 to cater to its domestic requirement.
  • Finished steel includes non-alloyed offerings, alloyed ones and stainless steel. 

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