Building entire villages made of prefabricated steel, large steel silos to store food grains across the country and increase in steel components in highways, flyovers, bridges, automobiles and aviation can stimulate domestic demand for the metal, according to experts from the steel industry.
“Currently the per capita steel consumption in India is 61.1 kg, of which the rural consumption is 9.74 kg, while the global average is 208.2 kg,” Sunil Barthwal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Steel, said during a discussion at a ‘Make in Steel’ conference.
The Draft Steel Policy 2017 envisages doubling the country's steel production capacity to 300 million tonnes (MT) and 160 kg per capita consumption by 2030, besides fresh investments of Rs 10 lakh crore of fresh investments for augmenting capacity in the sector. For meeting these requirements, the domestic demand of steel needs to be substantially enhanced.
The conference, held on 17th February, was organized by KATM, a leading think tank on the steel sector, with support from the Union Ministry of Steel, JSW Steel, ESSAR Steel, SAIL, MESCO Steel and Arttdinox.
Barthwal pointed out that China has built a 57-storey building in just 19 days using prefabricated steel.
"Steel has not penetrated much in the construction sector in rural areas. We are trying to develop some prototypes for houses using prefabricated structures in Chhattisgarh and some of these are of steel," he said.
Abhishek Singh, Executive Director, Food Corporation of India, cited the example of building steel silos. “We have a storage capacity of 600 lakh metric tonnes every year and we move 45 lakh metric tonnes from procuring states to consuming states,” he said.