India’s Iron Imports Down Significantly in 2013-2014

Business Standard reported that India’s iron ore imports have dropped to a five-year low so far in 2013-2014. According to the publication, steel mills and sponge iron makers have imported a total of 420,000 tonnes of iron ore during the first 11 months of the fiscal ended February 2014, a decline of 862% from the previous year.

According to Business Standard:

In 2012-13, iron ore imports touched a record level of 3.05 million tonnes.

A combination of factors contributed to the decline in imports like depreciation of rupee against the dollar, higher prices in the spot market and improved supply in the domestic market.

The supply of iron ore improved as the prices of iron ore witnessed an average reduction of Rs 700 per tonne for lumps and Rs 400 per tonne for fines, analysts said.

Prakash Duvvuri, head of research at OreTeam, a Delhi-based iron ore research firm, commented:

Sponge iron makers switched over to domestic lumps. There was no export of lumps from India in the last three years, which resulted in improved supply domestically. NMDC also reduced prices during the year, which resulted in buyers preferring domestic supply over imports. Rupee depreciation also contributed.

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