New Delhi: Leading steel producer SAIL has called for an industry initiative aimed at improving usage of the alloy in proportion with cement, a key building material, which will help both the consumers and steel makers.
“The steel industry together can take initiatives to enhance the steel-cement ratio in the country, which will lead to a win-win for both consumers and the industry,” SAIL chairman C. S. Verma said.
India’s steel-cement ratio, in terms of usage, is just 0.3, which compares poorly with developed countries like the UK, where it is around 1.5.
The ratio is even better in the US at 1.19, in Germany at around 1.1 and 1.07 in Japan.
“Therefore, there is need to further improve the steel - cement ratio in line with what has been achieved in developed countries,” Verma said.
The construction sector is the biggest user of steel in India. Within the construction sector, the residential segment accounts for nearly half the demand.
Verma, however, said that the rural market in India was undergoing rapid transformation with its new-found purchasing power.
“This potential could help us in raising per capita steel consumption in the country provided we understand their requirement better and produce suitable products,” he said.
“The rural steel consumption is only 12 kg per capita. We need more innovative steel solutions suited to the dynamics of the rural market,” he added.
In the urban market too, further education to the steel consumers could help increase steel consumption in sectors such as construction, Verma said.
The per capita consumption of steel in the country has increased from 29 kg in 2000 to 51.7 kg in 2010.