Steel 360 recently spoke to Mr. Satyendra Kumar Sarna, Former ED (works), RINL & Former MD, NINL regarding the production growth scenario of crude steel in the country.
Here are the excerpts of the interview:-
Q. What is the current role of Scrap in steel making in India and what is the outlook considering the fact that Scrap imports to India have been growing in the range of 15-25% each year?
Like other parameters in the steel industry, Scrap consumption for steel production is also cyclic in nature. Recent uptrend in Scrap consumption has two main reasons
- There has been negative growth of steel production in many regions of the world (WSA Reports). This has improved the availability of Scrap globally. This has also contributed to easing out of price of imported Scrap
- Sponge iron production has suffered a setback in the last couple of years due to crisis in Indian Iron ore mining sector which has adversely affected availability of Sponge iron The growth of Scrap imports in the range of 15-25% each year is not sustainable in the long run. In fact when the above two factors correct themselves, growth of scrap import will be negative. The process of correction of the above two factors has already started. The time is not far off when Scrap import will show negative growth.
Q.What is the future of Sponge Iron industry in India?
The future of gas based DRI is not bright since government policy for allocation of natural gas for sponge iron production is not encouraging. Coal based Sponge iron will continue to grow but at a much lesser rate. Coal based Sponge iron manufacturers have to learn that they cannot depend on the availability of rich ore forever. They have to quickly learn that to survive in the long run they need to start using lean ore along with Iron ore beneficiation and Pelletization.
(The full text of the interview is available in the June issue of the magazine.)