By the beginning of 2014, Essar Steel is to become the single largest Iron ore Pellet producer in spite of the fact that the company does not own a single iron ore mine in India
To bring in more clarity on present scenario and Essar’s future plans, Steel 360 in an interview with Dilip Oommen, Managing Director and CEO,
Essar Steel Limited learnt that the company is to touch 20 MnTPA Pellet making capacity in last quarter of FY 2014 and extra Pellets produced would be made available for merchant sales.
Along with rise in input cost, India’s steel demand is likely to grow at 5.9% to 75.8 MnT in 2013 and by 7% in 2014. By what % do you see Pellet prices moving in near future?
In the Indian domestic market, Iron ore Pellet prices follow the trend in Iron ore prices. Pellet prices vary depending on prices of Iron ore fines and their grades, which ultimately depends on the Fe content. Current prices of Pellet are standing in the range of Rs 7,500-9,000/MT (ex works) in domestic market. However, there are not many large merchant producers of Pellet in the country and I expect offers to be range bound in the near future.
Imports of Pellet are rising. Over 1.35 MnT of Pellet were imported in 2012-13 and exports have almost dried. Your comments on this?
India will continue to experience the demand in Iron ore Pellet since the steel making capacities have gone up and Iron ore Pellet is a preferred form of feed material.
What all expansion plans does Essar Steel have for FY 2014? What steps are being taken by you to become nation’s one of the most cost effective steel producer this year?
Essar Steel has completed its steel capacity expansion to 10 MnTPA. Our Iron ore Pellet expansion project at Odisha is also nearing completion. Our focus for the current year is to achieve targeted production and consolidate operations. The facilities are so designed as to provide flexibility in the usage of raw materials and energy source. The iron ore beneficiation facility in Odisha is capable of using low grade Iron ore fines which is then transported through a slurry pipeline to Paradip to convert the same into Pellets.