Guangzhou: India has enough iron ore to continue exporting to China despite a rapid expansion in India’s own steel industry, an ore mining and trading executive from the state of Goa, which depends heavily on iron ore exports, said.
Amit Majumdar, managing director of ore trading firm Minmet Resources International, said he was hopeful a solution would be found to the tax the Indian government has levied on exports of the mineral. The tax has caused turmoil in the iron-ore trade between India and China.
“There’s no problem in continuing exports. We have sufficient iron ore,” said Majumdar, who is also a board member of iron-ore miner Dempo Group.He said there were no takers within India for low-Fe content iron-ore fines, which China has been buying.
“The Goan economy, to a large extent, depends on exports of iron ore and tourism. So if there are heavy export duties, it could be badly affected,” he added.
India, the No.3 iron-ore supplier to China, levied an export tax of Rs300 on every tonne of ore at the beginning of this month in an attempt to preserve more of the resource for its domestic industry.
Iron-ore traders have said more than 20 vessels were diverted to other destinations in the first week of March alone since the tax had raised Indian iron-ore prices beyond those from Australia or even distant Brazil, the top two suppliers of iron ore to China.
“The trade should come back to normal. Exporters are talking to the government. There should be some solution in sight,” said Majumdar late on Monday on the sidelines of a conference organized by the China Steel and Iron Association. “China would not like to bear these additional costs. But if Chinese demand warrants, some solution will have to be found. I don’t think exports will stop.”