SAIL is evaluating the guidelines of the scheme and would reach a conclusion with respect to investments under it accordingly, company’s chairman Soma Mondal told PTI.
Replying to an e-mailed query on SAIL’s investment plans under the PLI scheme, she said “SAIL is presently in process of examining various categories under the PLI scheme, for feasibility and which may synergize with SAIL’s current capabilities…The process of evaluation is ongoing based on the detailed guidelines, it would take some time to crystalize the specific investment plans.”
Mondal also informed that post identifying product category under the scheme, if required, SAIL’s Research & Development Centre for Iron & Steel and the Centre for Engineering and Technology shall work in tandem with steel plants of the company to develop the products using required technologies.
On July 22, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi had approved a Rs 6,322-crore PLI scheme to boost production of specialty steel in India, attract additional investment of about Rs 40,000 crore and generate fresh 5.25 lakh job opportunities.
On October 22, the scheme was notified by the government and uploaded on the website of Ministry of Steel.
Three days later, Steel Minister Ram Chandra Prasad Singh along with Minister of State for Steel Faggan Singh Kulaste called a stakeholders’ meet where they informed that applications from parties looking to invest under the scheme will be invited from the second week of November.
In the meeting organised by the ministry, Singh also asked the stakeholders to submit their concerns with respect to the scheme and said a meeting of empowered group of secretaries (EGS) will be called to address the issues of the companies looking to invest under the scheme.
The five categories of specialty steel which have been included in the PLI scheme are coated/plated steel products, high strength/wear resistant steel, specialty rails, alloy steel products, steel wires and electrical steel.
Industries like automobile, electrical, defence, pipes etc are consumers of these grades of steel, and India is importing the same. The government aims to save Rs 33,000 crore forex which goes out of India annually in exchange for import of specialty steel.
When asked about a particular product category which SAIL is looking to develop to attract customers from segments like auto, consumer goods etc, the chairman said “as mentioned, the process of examining various categories for feasibility and fit with the company’s plans is presently underway. It would only be possible once further courses of action are frozen.”
She further said making specialty steel is a collaborative process with end-users and transforms the usual supplier-customer relationship into more of a partnership so that steels can be designed and made for specific users/segments.
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