Ease of doing business for MSMEs: Commerce minister Piyush Goyal on Tuesday urged captains of the steel industry to deliberate and work out a mechanism to support small manufacturers and ensure that withdrawal of export duties on steel doesn’t hurt small manufacturers, according to the commerce ministry. The minister “also exhorted them to continue supporting MSME Industry and exporters of engineering products,” the ministry said in a statement citing Goyal’s address at the third edition of ISA (Indian Steel Association) Steel Conclave in Delhi.
Goyal also urged the steel industry to achieve the production target of 300 million tonnes by 2030. The reported output of the steel industry for July-September in the current financial year was 30.06 million tonnes. The minister added that the government is working with other countries to explore more market opportunities for the manufacturers, particularly those industries which are competitive, have high-quality standards and are globally relevant.
Goyal’s comments come days after the government announced the withdrawal of export duty on steel and various steel products including on iron ores lumps and fines below 58 per cent FE (iron) content, iron ore pellets and the specified steel products including pig iron. In the wake of a sharp and steady rise in prices of steel and in order to augment the availability both of finished steel as well as raw materials or intermediates required for steel manufacture, the government had imposed export duty in May this year.
The export duty, however, was a temporary measure to maintain price stability and maintain the growth momentum of the industry which has also resulted in reining in inflation, Goyal said. Highlighting the challenge of lack of coking coal availability for the steel industry, the minister urged steel players to collaborate with eminent institutions and undertake research to find alternate solutions for this instead of being dependent on other countries for coking coal.