Indian budget likely to increase import duties on finished steel products
The Indian government is likely to effect an across-the-board increase in import duties on finished steel products in the national budget for the fiscal year 2018-19, scheduled to be placed before India’s parliament on February 1, government sources said on Monday, January 29.
The sources said that Indian exports of finished steel during the April-December period of 2017 at 7.6 million mt were up 53 percent year on year, while imports of finished steel totaled 6 million mt, showing an increase of 10 percent year on year, adding that this is a cause of concern and that tariff protection is necessary for Indian steel mills.
In fact, the likely increase in import duties on finished steel products in the budget will in fact be a process of rationalization of import duties for the steel sector as the government is committed to reducing rates on inputs while increasing rates for finished products. The budget is expected to either reduce or scrap import duties on critical inputs like smelting scrap, coking coal and ferronickel.
However, import duties will not change in the case of steel products which are not currently produced in India or in the case of steel products for which India is highly dependent on imports such as cold rolled grain-oriented steel products, the sources added.
*This was published on SteelOrbis website on January 29, 2018.