The Indian stainless steel industry has urged the government to slash the existing import duties on key raw materials in the upcoming Union Budget 2021-22. In its recommendations to the Ministry of Finance, Indian Stainless Steel Development Association has appealed to exempt the 2.5% Basic Customs Duty levied while importing key raw materials, including ferro-nickel and stainless steel scrap, which are unavailable in the country, making their import mandatory. ISSDA has also sought abolition of the existing 7.5% import duty on graphite electrodes, a critical component in stainless-steel manufacturing, as they constitute a major share of input cost. Additionally, ISSDA has sought an increase in the import duty on stainless-steel flat products to 12.5%, to bring it at par with carbon steel products, in order to check undue imports.
ISSDA asserted that these measures, if undertaken, will not only boost domestic manufacturing but also curb undesired stainless-steel imports, thus spurring the ‘Make in India’ movement.