Steel Output in India Grows Most in Year After Imports Decline

  • Production jumps 12%, while consumption rises 1%: data
  • Imports slump 36% after the government extended curbs

Steel production in India climbed the most in at least a year as producers fire up capacity in expectation of growing demand in Asia’s third-biggest economy.

Output in August advanced 12 percent to 8.24 million metric tons from a year earlier, the biggest gain since at least August 2015, according to monthly data provided by the Steel Ministry. Demand in the world’s third-biggest producer rose 1 percent to 6.97 million tons, while imports tumbled 36 percent to 619,000 tons.

Top producers such as JSW Steel Ltd. and Steel Authority of India Ltd. are aiming for record output in the financial year ending March 31 amid forecasts of demand growing as much as 5 percent. Steelmakers may boost market share as imports slid for a fifth month after the government in August extended restrictions on imports to protect domestic mills from cheaper exports by China, the world’s top producer, Russia, South Korea and Japan.

India extended the floor price mechanism on some imports for two months until Oct. 4, and levied anti-dumping taxes on hot and cold rolled coils purchases.

Exports surged 87 percent to 680,000 tons in August from a year earlier, according to the provisional data from the ministry. For the April-August period, imports were down 35 percent to 3.01 million tons, production rose 7.9 percent to 40.5 million tons and consumption advanced 1.3 percent to 33.74 million tons, it said.

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