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Indian Small Steelmakers Concerned About BIS Standards

Steel News - Published on Mon, 17 Jun 2019

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Indian steel market participants have expressed concerns over the steel ministry's recent notification urging local steelmakers to obtain a Bureau of Indian Standards quality certification for all steel products, as secondary steel producers may find it hard to meet BIS requirements. Of BIS' 140 steel product standards, around 53 categories have been mandated to obtain a BIS certification for manufacture and sale. The steel ministry has appealed to local manufacturers to voluntarily acquire BIS certificates for the remaining categories.

The notification will especially affect producers that produce steel by melting scrap steel or use sponge iron as a raw material in the induction furnace. China had in 2017 eliminated the country's 140mn t/yr induction furnace-based capacity as it did not meet environmental and product quality standards, but around 30pc of India's total steel is produced through the induction furnace route.

India's total crude steel output during the April 2018-March 2019 fiscal year increased by 3.3% on the year to 106.5 million tonne.

Mr Dipendra Kashiva, executive director of the Sponge Iron Manufacturers Association said that "Induction furnace-based steelmakers are unlikely to secure BIS certificates because of the high quantities of phosphorus found in the local feedstock, which affects the durability of the finished steel product.”

The steelmaking technologies used by induction furnace-based mills are unable to reduce the phosphorus content in the feedstock. An upgrade to better technology is expected to cost INR 1,200to INR 1,500 per tonne, which may eat into the thin profit margins of these steel producers, most of which are smaller than integrated producers that use the blast furnace route to produce steel and generally have much higher rates of profitability.

The country's six integrated steelmakers Tata, JSW, Essar, Jindal Steel, Sail and RINL will be able to easily meet the BIS standards for their entire product range as the use of converters in the blast furnace-based steelmaking process reduces phosphorus levels in finished steel, enhancing its durability.

Quality certifications have been enforced over the last few years primarily as a non-tariff barrier for imports, barring overseas supplies that do not meet BIS standards.

Source :

Posted By : Sanju Moirangthem on Mon, 17 Jun 2019
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