- Recently, the Union Minister of Steel has emphasized the role of SAIL steel plants in Mission Purvodaya to drive development of eastern India.
- The Eastern belt has the potential to add more than 75% of the country’s incremental steel capacity. In India’s march towards a $5 trillion economy, the eastern states can play a major role where the steel sector can become the catalyst.
- It is expected that out of the 300 MT capacity by 2030-31, over 200 MT can come from this region alone, driven by Industry 4.0.
- Earlier, Japan and India have also launched the India Japan Steel Dialogue to ensure sustainable growth of the steel sector. Iron ore exports from India, particularly Odisha, helped Japan in becoming a leading economic power.
- It was launched in 2020 for the accelerated development of eastern India through the establishment of an integrated steel hub in Kolkata, West Bengal.
- The focus will be on eastern states of India (Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal) and northern part of Andhra Pradesh which collectively hold ~80% of the country’s iron ore, ~100% of coking coal and significant portion of chromite, bauxite and dolomite reserves.
- The Integrated Steel Hub would focus on 3 key elements:
- Capacity addition through easing the setup of Greenfield steel plants.
- Development of steel clusters near integrated steel plants as well as demand centres.
- Transformation of logistics and utilities infrastructure which would change the socio-economic landscape in the East.
- The objective of this hub would be to enable swift capacity addition and improve overall competitiveness of steel producers both in terms of cost and quality.
National Steel Policy 2017
- The policy is nested within the government’s overall aspirational target of more than doubling the domestic steel capacity to 300 MTPA by FY2031
- It envisages investment to the tune of ₹10-lakh crore to scale up crude steel production capacity to 300 MT by 2030-31.
- To achieve the NSP target of 300 MT of steel capacity by FY2031, India would need to set up fresh capacities of 12 million tonnes (MT) every year till 2031.