Indian Stainless Steel Production Down to 55% of Capacity

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The operating capacity of India’s stainless steel mills has declined to the alarmingly low level of 55% due to cheap imports from China and other Free Trade Agreement (FTA) countries amid weak demand. The production capacity has come down from 65-70% level a year ago.

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Speaking at Indinox 2015, a two-day stainless steel industry event scheduled to be held between January 24 and 27, 2015 at Gandhinagar, N.C. Mathur, president of Indian Stainless Steel Development Association (ISSDA), said, “The mills have steadily invested $5 billion since its peak days of 2006-07 to create an overall installed capacity of around 5 million tons. Against that, we estimated a total production at 2.6-2.7 million tons in 2014-15.”

At $16,245 per metric ton, the 3-month price of nickel moved up 2.2% on Friday, November 21, making it the day’s biggest mover on the LME. At $16,170, the nickel spot price finished the market day on the LME up 2.1% per metric ton. The Indian nickel cash price saw a 0.5% decline to INR 1,018 ($16.43) per kilogram.

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Chinese stainless steel prices were flat for the day. The price of Chinese ferro-chrome remained essentially flat at CNY 8,300 ($1,356) per metric ton. The price of Chinese ferro-moly was unchanged at CNY 145,000 ($23,684) per metric ton.

The Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge continues hovering around $1.06 per pound for the fifth day in a row. For the fifth day in a row, the price of Chinese 316 stainless coil remained essentially flat at CNY 26,000 ($4,247) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 304 stainless coil saw essentially no change for the fifth day in a row, remaining around CNY 16,400 ($2,679) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap remained essentially flat at CNY 31,500 ($5,145) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap held steady at CNY 16,700 ($2,728) per metric ton.

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