New Delhi: India is expected to become the world's second largest producer of crude steel in next two years on the back of new steel projects and expansion plans of domestic players, the government on Tuesday said.
According to an official release, Steel Minister Beni Prasad Verma told a delegation of journalists from Korea and Philippines that with the ongoing Greenfield and Brownfield expansions, India is expected to become the 2nd largest producer in next couple of years.
India has registered an impressive growth of seven per cent in steel production during 2011-12 and has emerged as the fourth largest steel manufacturer in the world, he said.
It is estimated that India's Steel Production will reach 200 million tonnes by 2020, Verma said. Although sufficient iron ore reserves are available within the country, there was an imperative need to source coal, iron ore from other countries to securitise availability of the strategic raw material, he said.
He added that efforts were being made by the ICVL (International Coal Ventures) and NMDC for acquisitions of coal properties overseas.
The Steel Minister also stressed the need for bilateral ties and strategic partnership between India and Korea. India is looking to source advanced technologies developed by Korean Manufacturers for bringing about process innovation in the steel industry and increasing availability of new products in the Indian market, he said.
SAIL and POSCO are working together for possible joint venture initiatives for setting up a plant based on Finex technology, he added.
India slipped one rank to become the fourth largest steel producer in 2010, with 68.3 million tonne (MT) of output. Last year, it produced about 72 MT of steel. As far as expansion projects are concerned, state-run Steel Authority of India (SAIL) has undertaken a massive expansion drive to increase its steel production capacity from current 14 MT to about 24 MT, with an investment of about Rs 70,000 crore.