India: Performance snapshot of Steel Industry in CY '20
Indian iron ore production in CY '20 dropped by 15% to 200 mn t from 235 mn t in CY '19. The drop is attributed to COVID impact, when numerous mines that were shut down for months as also due to the delay in resumption of auctioned mines. Pellet also witnessed a 16% drop in production to 59 mn t as compared with 70 mn t in CY '19.
The imports of iron ore dropped to 0.5 mn t in CY '20 due to high global iro ore fines prices with no imports being witnessed during Apr to Oct '20 . The annual average global iron ore fines (Fe 62%) prices increased to $108/t CFR China in CY '20 as against $93.5/t CFR China in CY '19.
The exports of iron ore rose by more than double to be at 40.8 mn t driven primarily by the Odisha based miners actively liquidating their low-grade ore stocks. The pellet exports; however, picked up marginally to be at 13.1 mn t in the year.
Indian coal industry was jolted by the COVID-19 led demand contraction, as a result of which Country's largest miner - Coal India (CIL) reduced its production during first half-year of the year. Nevertheless, with resumption of economic activity and improved performance from captive miners, overall production has managed to record marginal growth in CY '20.
Steep decline in power requirement significantly lowered non-coking coal imports; however, coking coal imports were almost stable y-o-y as higher margins encouraged steelmakers to lift output post lock-down.