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India’s growth with decarbonization is under global scrutiny, says Additional Secretary, Union Ministry of Steel

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Mumbai: “The world is focused on the India Steel growth story and view it with a critical eye on how India will achieve growth with decarbonization. The challenge is to grow responsibly. Innovation and research will play a bigger role; more research is expected from the industry concerning the production of New Age steel”, stated Ruchika Chaudhary Govil, Additional Secretary, Union Ministry of Steel.

She said this while addressing the three days long India Steel 2023 organized jointly by the Ministry of Steel, Govt of India, Ministry of Commerce & Industry and FICCI. The industry conclave saw deliberation by the industry experts on the augmentation of enabling logistics infrastructure.

Maintaining that the Indian steel industry has witnessed significant growth and transformation in the last two-three decades, Govil, said, “The Indian steel industry has witnessed significant growth and transformation in the last two-three decades. India’s steel industry is much better positioned than other countries and should witness a strengthening of fundamentals, driven by increasing domestic demand, enhanced export opportunities, availability of raw material & labour, and technology adoption. The strong foundation has helped it to remain resilient and adapt to the changing market dynamics and scenarios. “

The session on ‘Augmentation of enabling logistics infrastructure’ discussed issues related to the movement of raw materials and finished products to the market. Abhijit Narendra, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Steel, said, “We have to find new ways of transportation for steel, and development of inland waterways and ports will go a long way. PM Gati Shakti will change the paradigm, and it has started asserting in achieving the goal.”

Also present on the occasion Sunita Dawra, special secretary – logistics department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, was of the view that the growth in the country will happen with the help of infrastructure — it is about connectivity, and regulatory processes, which promotes ease of logistics that helps in manufacturing become more competitive. “

She said that under PM Gati Shakti they meet and look at every project from the lens of PM’s Gati Shakti National Master Plan. We check the infrastructure gaps and add GIS layers to the National Master Plan for roads and existing railway stations, ports, airports, etc to ensure ease of logistics to the industry.

Giving examples of ease of logistics being worked upon by the Government to connect iron ore mines with steel-producing areas, she said, “New railway line is being built with the allocation of around Rs 10,000 crore by South Eastern Railway which will cover Jharkhand and Odisha. Junagarh to Nabarangpur (Odisha) with an investment of Rs 2000 crore; the 160 km long line will reduce the distance from Bailadila Iron mines by 130 km and decrease logistics costs. Similarly, Son Nagar (Bihar) and New Andal (West Bengal) will be built at Rs 1200 crore; it will facilitate coal movement in the northern part of the country to the ports in Kolkata.”

“We are facilitating Logistics in the eastern belt, south-eastern belt, and other parts of the country under PM Gati Shakti. Many initiatives are happening not only in railways, the Ministry of Road Transport has the Bharatmala project; the government has given sanctions to broaden roads to de-clog the movement of EXIM and flow of freight under the Bharatmala and Sagarmala projects. Huge interventions are taking place in the areas of city logistics, pipelines, etc for optimum alignment of PM National Master Plan to utilize these roads to give shorter connectivity to save time,” Sunita Dawra added.

Maintaining logistics for the steel sector is important and challenging, Avinash Kumar Mishra, ED TT (Steel), Railway Board, Govt of India, said that Railways have been growing along with Steel plants as it is a major consumer and supporter of the steel industry. He invited suggestions from the industry to improve the distribution of rolling stocks and paths for steel consignment.

He informed that the Indian railways are increasing production of rolling stocks, working on ease of doing business, digitization, etc to ensure that the Railways and Steel Industry can work towards achieving the Amrit Kal targets set by the Government of India.

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