Several state governments across India have imposed a lockdown on non-essential business activities and restricted the movement of people to control the spread of COVID-19.
Many steel plants in India are facing problems with transportation of finished good and supply of raw material. Stoppage of operations have the potential to damage plant and machinery installed at mills. Secondary mills in many regions have either shut operations or have cut production, as reported by David Index.
The Ministry of Steel has directed state governments to the fact that steel production is part of “essential services” as per law. It has requested government authorities to allow the distribution of coal and steel during the lockdown. No restriction should be imposed on the operations of steel plants whether it is integrated steel plants or electric arc furnace-based steel mills. Also, the entry and exit of workers that engaged in these plants should not be hindered. Governments should ensure free movement of raw materials that include iron ore, coal, limestone, dolomite, ferro-alloys, scrap, sponge iron etc by road, waterways as they are essential for steel making.
Furthermore, the ministry demanded that there should be no restriction on mining activities as it is integral to steel production.