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Posted at: Apr 26, 2019, 8:48 AM; last updated: Apr 26, 2019, 8:48 AM (IST)

Stable govt required at Centre: Furnace owners

Stable govt required at Centre: Furnace owners

Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, April 25

To make up losses, there should be a “stable” government at the Centre. Furnace owners in the region are waiting for a new government to take-over so that the furnace and induction business, which is running into losses for the past over five to six months, picks up once again.

The Induction Furnace Association of India president, KK Garg, said for the last few months furnaces were suffering losses and the production had come down to almost 50 per cent.

“The scrap is not easily available and it is not being imported as many issues are involved. Secondly, there are sale issues as the stocks are not being regularly sold due to recession in cycle and auto-parts industry,” he said.

“The construction business, too, is slow. In the present scenario, we are keeping our fingers crossed so that a good and stable government takes over reins at the Centre,” he added.

Furnace owners said, “We supply material to two segments, including cycle/auto parts and construction. Only demand for steel is for construction purpose in Punjab.”

However, The Furnace Association Mandi Gobindgarh president, Mohinder Gupta, said, “Less depends on the state government. The union government plays a key role in deciding the fate of furnace industry.”

“Since July 2017, when the GST was introduced, the business flourished like anything for almost a year. But during the past five to six months the furnace industry is in recession,” he added.

“Firstly, we are not getting power supply at the rate of Rs 5 per unit as claimed by the Punjab Government. We are paying Rs 7 to 10 per unit. Secondly, we will flourish only if the auto-sector flourishes. Thirdly, we are also suffering due to unnecessary harassment by the local GST Department officials. They come for inspection not for the benefit of the department but for their own vested interests. The state government needs to crack a whip against such officials/inspectors,” said Gupta.

“A major industry, which requires steel, should be set up in Punjab. There are 92 registered furnace units in Mandi Gobindgarh alone,” he added.

Highlights of the furnace & induction biz

  • Furnace owners want a stable and good govt at the Centre.
  • The new government should come up with industry-friendly policies.
  • For the past five to six months, furnaces are running in losses.
  • Scrap is not easily available. 
  • There is no major demand for steel from cycle-auto parts or construction business.
  • Local GST officials harass furnace owners, which goes unchecked.

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