Union Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh on Thursday said that anti-dumping policy has helped in decreasing steel imports and has increased exports. Talking to ANI here, Singh said that India imposed anti-dumping policy to counter steel dumping by China in India that caused slump in Indian steel market. “India imposed anti-dumping duty to counter China which dumped extra steel in India; this created slump in Indian steel industry. After anti-dumping duty, 37 per cent import declined and export increased 102 per cent. India has first time been declared net export country. India imported 7 million tones of steel but exported 8.2 million tonnes,” said Singh, adding that “this has been a major achievement of Modi government in the steel industry in these years”.
Talking about other achievements of his ministry, Singh said that considering the global slump in the steel industry, we have managed to stabilize it. “We have set goals for future. Under the National Steel Policy, we have set a target of producing 300 million metric tonnes of steel by 2030 from current capacity of 124 lakh tones. For this we need to increase the consumption of the steel. Currently per person consumption of steel is 204 kilogram whereas in India it is only 64 kilogram,” said Singh. On the challenges of the foreign steel companies, the minister said that first we have to ensure that India should be competitive for the exports.
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He said that the Modi government has made it mandatory for all the government ministries, and departments to use Indian steel in projects worth more than 50 crore. “The only exemptions available are that the steel can be imported if the required steel product is not manufactured in India, and the quality is not good,” said the minister. He added that the Steel Ministry has invoked Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) in steel production to increase quality and competitiveness. “To ensure quality we have invoked BIS standards in steel production. This means that 75 per cent products of Indian steel industry will be subjected to the BIS,” said Singh, adding that this will make secondary steel producing companies competitive and they can contribute in country’s infrastructure.
No politics should be over President election
Union Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh on Thursday said that there should be a consensus candidate for the post of the President. He said that it was during former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s rule that Abdul Kalam was made a consensus candidate for the President’s post. “The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) would again like to find a consensus candidate for the post of President as it is very dignified post and there should not be any politics over it,” said Singh.
The Union Minister’s observation came at a time when Congress President Sonia Gandhi is uniting the Opposition parties to find an Opposition candidate against the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate for the post. A presidential election will be held in India before 25 July 2017, the day when the President Pranab Mukherjee’s term expires