The government has halved import duty on certain grades of steel to 5 per cent with a view to cut cost of raw material for domestic industry. The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) in a notification said customs duty on import of “hot rolled coils, cold-rolled Magnesium Oxide (MgO) coated and annealed steel, hot rolled annealed and pickled coils and cold rolled full hard (used) for the manufacture of cold rolled grain oriented steel (CRGO) steel” has been cut to 5 per cent with immediate effect. CRGO are electrical steel grades used for stampings and cores of electrical transformers and other electrical appliances. They are principally used for motors, generators, alternators, ballasts, small transformers and a variety of other electromagnetic applications.
While India imposes anti-dumping duties on several flat- steel products, it is short in CRGO steel and has to import it. Last month, the government imposed definitive anti- dumping duties on hot-rolled (HR) and cold-rolled (CR) flat- steel products (excluding certain value-added steels such as stainless steel) from several countries including China, Japan and South Korea. Flat products constitute the bulk of Indian steel imports over the last few years. Finished steel demand growth in India was relatively weak at 3 per cent in 2016-17.