NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said the country has set a target of nearly doubling the production of crude steel from 154 million tonnes to 300 million tonnes within the next decade.

PM Modi, who was speaking at the foundation stone laying ceremony for the expansion of ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel (AM/NS) Hazira steel manufacturing facility in Gujarat over a video link, said it will not only set the stage for fresh investments, but also open the doors for many new jobs in Gujarat and the country.

“An investment of over 60,000 crore will create many employment opportunities for the youth of Gujarat and the country. Post expansion, the crude steel production capacity at Hazira Steel Plant will increase from 9 million tonnes to 15 million tonnes,” PM Modi said.

He underlined the role of the steel industry in achieving goals of moving towards ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat (self-reliant India)’ and said that a strong steel sector will lead to a robust infrastructure sector. The steel sector has a massive contribution in roads, railways, airport, ports, construction, automotive, capital goods, and engineering products, he added.

“With the proposed expansion at Hazira, a whole new technology will now be available in India that will go a long way in giving a boost to electric vehicle manufacturing, automobile and other manufacturing sectors. I am sure that this project of AM/NS India will prove to be a milestone in the vision of Make in India. This will give new strength to our efforts for a developed India and self-reliant India in the steel sector,” the PM said.

PM Modi added that India is rapidly moving towards becoming the world’s largest manufacturing hub and the government is actively engaged in creating the necessary policy environment for development of the steel sector.

“Due to everyone’s efforts in the last 8 years, the Indian steel industry has become the second largest steel producing industry in the world. There is immense potential for development in this industry,” he added.

Listing the measures to further promote the Indian steel industry, he said the production linked incentive (PLI) scheme has created new avenues of growth. Citing the example of INS Vikrant, PM Modi said the country has gained expertise in high-grade steel and its uses are increasing in critical strategic applications. Scientists at DRDO developed the special steel that was used in the aircraft carrier, he added.

“As a step further to promoting such capabilities, the country has now set a target of doubling the production capacity of crude steel. We currently produce 154 MT of crude steel. Our target is to achieve 300 MT production capacity in the next 9-10 years,” he said. Pointing out the various challenges to achieving this goal, he explained how the steel industry was trying to tackle the issue of carbon emissions.

On one hand India is expanding its capacity to produce crude steel and on the other, it is also promoting the use of environment friendly technologies, he said. “Today, India is emphasising on developing such production technologies which not only reduce carbon emissions but also capture and reuse carbon,” he said lauding AM/NS India for its emphasis on use of green technology.

By Shadab

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