Steel prices in Punjab dip by Rs 1,000-1,200 per MT
Analysts expect further decline in prices by Rs 500 to Rs 700 MT In Few Days THE spot rates of steel in Punjab plummeted by Rs 1,000-1,200 per metric tonne (MT), a day after the government announced a slew of measures to rein in rising steel prices. The spot prices of ingot today opened at Rs 33,000 per MT, compared to Rs 34,200 per MT on Tuesday, a decline of Rs 1,200. Similarly, the rates of Saria and TMT bars have reduced by Rs 1,000-1,200 per MT. Steel analysts expect further decline in steel prices ranging between Rs 500 and Rs 700 per MT within next couple of days. “Because of the steps taken by the government such as imposing 15 per cent export duty on steel products, the prices are likely to further dip by Rs 500-700 per MT and thereafter the rates will stabilise,” said R Sood, Mandi Gobindgarh-based steel trader. However, the secondary steel producers have castigated the government for removing countervailing duty (CVD) on TMT bars and structural steel by claiming that it would hit the local industry hard. “Imposition of CVD on TMT bars was the only protection for the domestic industry like ours and now with the abolition of the same, industry will have to face the cheaper products from overseas markets which will further put pressure on rates,” All India Steel Re-Rollers Association President Vinod Vashisht said. “Rather the government should have withdrawn CVD on scrap which is our key raw material and impose export duty in iron ore,” he said while adding, “these steps must have improved the supply of steel in the domestic market.” Union Finance minister P Chidambaram yesterday announced a series of steps, including imposing 15 per cent export on semi-finished steel and 5 per cent on galvanized sheets in a bid to contain rising steel prices.