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Friday, January 8, 2010

Import ban on steel lifted - sigh of relief for Auto sector

The government on Friday removed restriction on imports of hot-rolled steel, which is mainly used in the automobile and consumer durable industries, giving a big relief to these sectors from rising raw material prices.

A notification to this effect has been issued by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT).

The government had put the mother steel product in the restricted category in October 2008, which meant that the users required an import licence from the government.

Experts said the government is allowing free imports as the domestic demand is picking up and steel prices have gone up by 10-14 per cent in the last 45 days.

During April-December 2008-09, the imports of this product were worth USD 2.33 billion.