The Indian Stainless Steel Development Association (ISSDA) has requested the government to do away with import duty on stainless steel (SS) scrap, ferronickel, and graphite electrodes to increase SS production in India and aid the MSME sector that makes up 40pc of domestic SS market.
SS scrap and ferronickel attract a basic customs duty of 2.5pc, while a 7.5pc duty is levied on graphite electrodes. The three constitute a major share of the input cost. The association has appealed to the finance ministry ahead of the upcoming annual budget. Domestic availability of key raw materials is almost negligible, which makes imports imperative for sustained production.
ISSDA believes a reduction in the duties, especially amid high dependence on imports, could reduce input costs and make the SS industry competitive.
ISSDA stated that the government must stop considering imports of essential raw materials as a source of revenue and provide stimulus to the SS industry by exempting these duties on the critical raw materials.