Row over exporting Iron Ore pellets, metals and mineral associations seek clarity from government

Federation of Indian mineral industries has written a letter to the minister of mines, Pralhad Joshi, seeking a complete ban on the export of pellets as domestic steel companies are facing a shortage due to the ongoing pandemic Covid-19 crisis, while pellet manufacturers’ association has said that any ban on exports will hurt the industry. We request you to kindly impose a complete ban on the export of pellets from the country and also look into the matter of past export of pellets by entities as per DGFT’s Export Policy, FIMI said in its letter.

 According to FIMI, pellet exports had been rising for the past few years depriving the domestic steel industry. In the present times the domestic mining and metal industry are struggling to cope with the impact of COVID-19, it is essential to impose a complete ban on the export of pellets to ensure availability of this high-grade material for the domestic steel industry, it said. However, pellet manufacturers are against the idea of banning pellet exports, especially at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic is creating uncertainties in domestic demand.

“Any thought of banning the pellet export would be catastrophic for the pellet industry and thousands of people will be unemployed because many plants will become unavailable and capacity utilization will go further down, said Deepak Bhatnagar, secretary-general, pellet manufacturers association of India.