National Steel Vision on cards

The government is in advance stages of finalising the ‘National Steel Vision’, Union Steel Minister Beni Prasad Verma has said.

“India is the fourth largest producer of steel in the world and is likely to become the second largest soon,” Verma said, adding the steel production capacity has gone up from 66 million tonne in 2009 to about 90 million tonne in 2012 and the government was making efforts to support this growth.

This was all part of finalising the new National Steel Vision which is at an advanced stage, he said. The steel ministry has prepared a road map on R&D and technology, focused on coal ash reduction and production of value added steel, he said assuring that the Centre was looking at ways for optimal utilisation of mineral resources.

The government has taken measures like reduction in import duties on various inputs for the growth of the steel sector, Prasad said adding that the government also supported acquisition of mineral assets abroad, which will give a boost to the industry.

The minister, however, said the important thrust areas included gaining a competitive edge in the global market through innovative means. The other areas are production of “green steel” and ensuring “zero accidents” in operation.

The cost-effective logistics was an important area that needed to be improved by using slurry pipelines and by upgrading rail, road and port infrastructure, the minister said adding that steel industry has the potential to be a catalyst of growth in the future and lead to progress of the national in the times to come.

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