India is the second largest producer of cement in the world. No wonder, India's cement industry is a vital part of its economy, providing employment to more than a million people, directly or indirectly. Ever since it was deregulated in 1982, the Indian cement industry has attracted huge investments, both from Indian as well as foreign investors.

India has a lot of potential for development in the infrastructure and construction sector and the cement sector is expected to largely benefit from it. Some of the recent major government initiatives such as development of 98 smart cities are expected to provide a major boost to the sector.

Expecting such developments in the country and aided by suitable government foreign policies, several foreign players such as Lafarge-Holcim, Heidelberg Cement, and Vicat have invested in the country in the recent past. A significant factor which aids the growth of this sector is the ready availability of the raw materials for making cement, such as limestone and coal.

The Construction industry of India is an important indicator of the development as it creates investment opportunities across various related sectors. The construction industry has contributed an estimated ₹ 308 billion to the national GDP in 2011-12 (a share of around 19%). The industry is fragmented, with a handful of major companies involved in the construction activities across all segments; medium-sized companies specializing in niche activities; and small and medium contractors who work on the subcontractor basis and carry out the work in the field. In 2011, there were slightly over 500 construction equipment manufacturing companies in all of India. The sector is labour-intensive and, including indirect jobs, provides employment to more than 35 million people.

India’s crude steel production grew by 7.4 per cent year-on-year to 95.6 Million Tonnes (MT) in 2016.! Total production of crude steel during February 2017 grew by 8.5 per cent year-on-year to 8.08 MT.
India’s steel exports grew 150.0 per cent year-on-year to 0.75 MT in February 2017, while steel imports declined 46 per cent year-on-year to 0.49 MT. Total consumption of finished steel grew by 3.4 per cent year-on-year to 76.22 MT during April 2016-February 2017.

Steel industry and its associated mining and metallurgy sectors have seen a number of major investments and developments in the recent past. According to the data released by Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), the Indian metallurgical industries attracted Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) to the tune of US$ 10.15 billion, respectively, in the period April 2000– December 2016.

Some of the major investments in the Indian steel industry are as follows:

  • Tata Steel has signed an agreement to purchase a majority 51 per cent stake in Creative Port Development (CPDPL), which has a concession agreement with the Odisha government to develop a 10 million-tonnes-per-annum (MTPA) Subarnarekha port at Chamukh village in Balasore district of Odisha.

The iron industry is the raw-material basis of ferrous metallurgy. Iron ore has been extracted and iron produced from it since ancient times. Iron industry as a sector of the economy began to develop rapidly in the first half of the 18th century in connection with the increased smelting of pig iron and steel. The iron and steel industry in India is organised into three categories: main producers, other major producers, and secondary producers. In 2004-05, the main producers i.e. SAIL, TISCO and RINL had a combined capacity of around 50% of India’s total steel production capacity and production. The other major producers — ESSAR, ISPAT and JVSL — account for around 20% of the total steel production capacity.

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