The government is expecting no cash loss for state-owned SAIL in the ongoing fiscal, driven by higher production, Union Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh said today. This follows SAIL earlier stating that it will make every possible effort to boost its profitability. “This (fiscal) year, we are expecting that there would be no cash losses in SAIL,” Singh said in an exclusive interview to PTI on completion of three years of the Modi government. “I am seeing the results for the last six months. It has already been reflected in their performance that this year there may not be any cash loss,” the minister said. The minister has already asked the Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) to produce more since “the more you produce, the less is the loss”.
“I have said that in some of the plants where you have reached only 34 per cent or 40 per cent after ramping (up the production), it goes to 70-75 per cent. Naturally, they would be producing more… and if you attain the level of 80-90 per cent, you may be in profits,” the minister explained. According to Singh, SAIL was running up losses in the past to the tune of Rs 10 crore daily, which works out more than Rs 3,000 crore a year. India’s largest steelmaker’s standalone net loss narrowed to Rs 794.8 crore for the quarter to December 2016 from a year ago.
Faced with challenging market conditions, state-owned SAIL had said in April it would make every possible effort to boost its profitability. Reviewing the strategic sales initiatives for 2017-18, SAIL Chairman P K Singh had said the “best-ever production and sales” have been achieved in the company’s history last fiscal with 12 per cent growth in steel production and sales of over 13 mt. He also called for improving the performance this fiscal year and underscored the importance of effective strategic plans for considerably higher targets.