Union Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan urged all stakeholders of the sector to come together to ensure that industries use only domestically produced steel. In the last few quarters, domestic demand for steel has declined due to the economic slowdown followed by the COVID-19 outbreak and resultant shutdowns.
“Unless all the stakeholders including the mining industry, the processing industry, the furnace associations, the secondary steel sector or the integrated steel plants, come together, it will be difficult to take steel to another level,” Pradhan said.
He was addressing a virtual summit organised by Hyve India along with other steel industry associations.
The minister further said there are many sectors which still do not use domestically produced steel due to various reasons. Demand for steel in the domestic market is very low, and we will take up all the programmes that will boost the sector.
“Since Independence, during the last six years, a majority of the reforms have been undertaken by the government to make the raw materials available for the sector. We all should work towards fulfilling our needs with steel completely made in India,” Pradhan added.
Last month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had urged the country to go ‘vocal for local’ and use the coronavirus crisis to make India self-reliant.
Pradhan further said the initiative to open up coal blocks for commercial mining was with an aim to achieve self-sufficiency in meeting energy needs and boost the industrial sector.
Demand for goods like steel and coal has plunged in the last two-three months, he said, adding it has impacted all the stakeholders.
“We have been hearing and considering all the suggestions, including taxes and incentives given by the industry and have also made a few announcements to give a boost to the sector. We will continue doing our part. We will also soon come up with the (steel) scrap policy,” Pradhan added