Indian steel companies call for liberalization of chrome ore exports and exemption from import duties on steam coal

Indian steel producers Tata Steel and ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel Limited (AMNS) have petitioned the Indian government demanding the liberalization of chrome ore export rules and a waiver of import duties on steam coal, said government officials, citing communications made to the government on Friday, August 5.

Tata Steel has requested the removal of the system of channeling chrome ore exports through the state-owned trading company MMTC Limited.

Under the pipeline system, chrome ore miners like Tata Steel commit to sourcing through tenders from the trading company MMTC Limited and the latter is responsible for the sales of the commodity. abroad.

Seeking to free up the country’s chrome ore exports, Tata Steel’s communications to India’s trade and steel ministries pointed out that MMTC Limited has failed to maintain minimum shipments due to financial difficulties, as it was declared a non-performing asset (NPA) by its bankers.

The company said its subsidiary, Tata Steel Mining Limited (TSML), had acquired three chrome ore mines – Sukinda, Saraibil and Kammarda – through auction with rules requiring the mining company to ship 1.6 million tonnes per year to the trading company, failing which penalties would be imposed.

Tata Steel said MMTC launched export tenders in June but later canceled them, and materials were in ports and other shipments from the mines could not be continued. due to the severe shortage of storage in ports.

Under these circumstances, it is very difficult for the mines to meet the minimum shipment of material to the trading company and the mines are subject to penalties. Tata Steel has therefore requested the removal of chrome ore from the channeled list so that miners can export freely without hindrance and the risks of facing penalties for not supplying MMTC.

AMNS in turn requested an exemption from customs duties on imported steam coal used in Corex blast furnaces. The company pointed out that currently a zero import duty rate is applicable on anthracite, pulverized coal and coking coal, while imported steam coal is subject to a 10% levy.

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