|SAIL chairman PK Singh|
Addressing the 45th annual general meeting (AGM) of the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), Singh said the steel demand in India will witness a significant growth in future, given the current stage of development in Indian economy. The World Steel Association, in its short-range outlook, has forecast 6.1 percent growth in steel consumption for India in 2017, he added.
He said, “The domestic steel demand is improving...
on the back of government policies and developmental goals, and SAIL is expeditiously equipping itself to serve market requirements fully and claim a broader market share. SAIL with newer and better technologies at its disposal aims to leverage potential of growth in steel demand by operating at rated capacities, product differentiation and customer satisfaction." The chairman also shared the company's efforts towards product value addition and informed the company is in the final leg of modernisation and expansion programme. "SAIL has done significant value addition in its product mix, with higher grades of steel... from Rourkela Steel Plant's new plate mill for the oil and gas sector, SAIL HT-600 for the automotive sector and high strength LPG steel grade from Bokaro Steel Plant, etc," Singh said. At Bhilai Steel Plant (BSP), the world's longest single piece rail of 130 metres is being produced and supplies of welded 260 metres rail panels to the Indian Railways are in progress. Besides, a 3 mtpa hot strip mill in Rourkela is slated to be installed by 2018. He added, "World economic recovery is on track... and presents a healthy sign for industrial and manufacturing activities across globe. India is projected to become the world's fifth-largest economy in 2017, surpassing UK and France and the world's third largest economy by 2023, surpassing Japan and Germany."
Such kind of growth will definitely create larger steel demand and boost consumption in country, the chairman added.
Listing out the achievements of SAIL, Singh said the company since inception has produced 475 million tonnes (mt) of crude steel and partnered in all major national projects requiring steel.
SAIL achieved a turnover of Rs 49,180 crore during FY 2016-17, which is higher by 14 per cent over preceding year owing to increase in both sales volume (which grew by 8 per cent) and Net Sales Realisation (NSR) of saleable steel of five integrated steel plants by about 6 per cent, he said.
The increase in NSR was partly due to an overall improvement in price levels and partly due to measures in enriching company's product mix. SAIL's intensive focus on improving operational parameters resulted in positive EBITDA in all the four quarters of FY 2016-17 and the company trimmed losses by 30 per cent by recording an overall improvement in production, sales and efficiency. During FY 2016-17, SAIL achieved highest ever hot metal production at 15.73 Million Tonnes (MT), crude steel production at 14.50 MT and saleable steel production at 13.87 MT. "However, the unprecedented increase in coal prices during FY 2016-17 adversely impacted the cost of production and our overall margins. SAIL had an additional impact of around Rs 4,300 crore as compared to FY 2015-16 on account of increase in prices of both imported and domestic coal," the chairman said. This increase in coal prices, neutralised the significant improvement in Net Sales Realisation (NSR). Notwithstanding the increase in coal price, SAIL could reduce its operational expenditure per tonne of saleable steel by 2 per cent during the fiscal, he added. The PSU is also taking initiatives towards remodelling its operations.