New Delhi: Steel Authority of India (Sail) is set to report over 4% growth in its half-yearly sales to around 5.6 million tonnes on improved domestic demand across sectors, a source privy to the development said.

“Sail had better sales in the first half. In the first half, it has sold around 5.6 million tonnes of steel. This is an over 4% increase compared to the corresponding period last fiscal," the source said.

Sail’s rail mill at bhilai steel plant in Chhattisgarh, Photo by Maitreyee Handique

The source said sales of the company did well across sectors during the period, including an almost 100% growth in sales of auto grade steel.

“Sales of special quality grades in flat products were up 8% over the corresponding period last year (2010). Around 17% growth was recorded in the LPG grade," he said.

Sales of long rails to the Indian Railways were up by 8,604 tonnes and 5% growth was recorded in overall supply to the railways and defence sectors in the first half.

“With a focus on servicing requirements of end-consumers, supplies to actual customers increased by almost eight lakh tonnes during the first half over the corresponding period last year," he said.

Exports of steel by Sail were also up during the first half by 77.5% to 1.81 lakh tonnes, compared to 1.02 million tonnes in the April-September period last fiscal.

Tata Steel had earlier reported that its total sales in the first half of the fiscal increased to 3.241 million tonnes from 3.064 million tonnes a year ago.