November 2019
M T W T F S S
« Oct    
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930  

[oped of the day] Opportunities for India in the Asian Century

Mains Paper 2 : Bilateral, Regional and Global Groupings and agreements involving India |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Nothing much

Mains level : Asian Century


Context

India is at an inflection point. Its recent period of significant growth was faster than the global average. 

Slowdown in growth

Indian growth has stalled in the face of global headwinds against trade, volatile commodity markets, stagnant private investment, weaker domestic consumption, and constrained government spending.

Asian potential

    • Asia is becoming the world’s powerhouse and economic center. 
    • Economic contribution – research from the McKinsey Global Institute finds that Asia could generate more than half of the world’s GDP by 2040.
    • Cross-border flows – they are increasingly shifting towards the region, which is rapidly integrating. With 60% of goods traded, 56% of greenfield foreign direct investment (FDI) and 74% of journeys by Asian air travelers taking place within the region.

Asian connectivity

    • There are 4 distinct sub-Asias which are diverse groups of economies with characteristics that complement each other and are fast becoming increasingly interconnected.
    • In the new era of regionalization, Asia is taking a lead. 
    • Historic account – Historically, India—and other countries in ‘Frontier Asia’ (Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, etc)—have had relatively low levels of integration when compared with the rest of the region. Only around 31% of their flows are intra-regional. 
    • What lies ahead – how they now respond to the shifting flows and the opportunities they present will be the key in defining and delivering its next chapter of growth. 

What India offers

    • Services – account for 53% of India’s GDP
    • Young labor force – younger than China’s median age by around ten years
    • New markets for the rest of the region
    • Growth – despite the downturn, GDP in India is expected to grow at well above 5% for the coming period.

Adding Asia focus – opportunity # 1: Manufacturing

    • Advanced Asian countries shift gears – countries like China move up the economic development ladder and phase out manufacturing in favor of a shift to R&D and knowledge-intensive manufacturing. There is room for India to become a larger sourcing base for global supply chains.
    • Example of mobile phones – the global sourcing value of mobile handsets is over $500 billion in scale. India could aspire for a 15-20% share of this footprint. 

What needs to be done for #1

    • Improving infrastructure – Investments are needed to improve the logistical backbone supporting manufacturing. 
    • R&D – Incentives are needed to encourage future investments in R&D.
    • Innovation – Large-scale innovation hubs need to be developed to move to manufacture to the next phase and help to capture the demand opportunity.
    • Recent corporate tax cut – The recent move towards an attractive corporate taxation regime could provide the much-needed ignition to attract more investment for Make in India.

Opportunity # 2: Capital

    • For development – India can benefit from the flows of capital and investment powering development.
    • Advanced Asia – which comprises Japan, South Korea, Singapore and China have been huge contributors to the development of ‘Emerging Asia’ – small highly interconnected economies like Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, etc.
    • Example – China accounts for 42% of total Asian outbound FDI in 2013-17 and 43% and 61% of Emerging Asia’s imports and exports respectively.

To do for #2

    • Attract investments – while India is beginning to attract investment from firms across Asia, more needs to be done to realize the potential opportunity of investment flows from other countries.

Opportunity # 3 : Innovation

    • Hub of innovation – East Asia has emerged as a leading hub that rivals the leading innovation hubs globally.
    • Technologies – It has already gained pole position in driving innovation relating to key disruption themes such as electric mobility, 5G telecom, and renewable energy. 
    • Patents – Nearly 65% of global patents stemmed from Asia between 2015 and 2017, derived from the 50 fastest-rising innovation cities in Asia.
    • This gives an opportunity for Indian firms to be a part of this Asia-wide innovation arc.

Opportunity # 4: Growth

    • Rapidly growing Asia – is catapulting its major cities into leading consumption centers.
    • The market for India – This offers a market opportunity for Indian businesses ranging from IT services, tourism services, generic pharmaceuticals, automotive components, agrochemicals, and so forth. 
    • Reduce trade deficit – Just with China alone, India runs an over $50 billion of trade deficit. This could be narrowed down by targeting these export opportunities. The research found that about 420 cities in emerging markets could generate 45% of global growth, many of them residing in Asia.

Conclusion

The Asian century is truly underway. As globalization gives way to regionalism, Asia takes a leading position. India could look to many of the opportunities arising out of the region’s rapid integration and shifting networks and flows to help drive its next chapter of growth.

Foreign Policy Watch: India-ASEAN

[op-ed snap] Thumbs down

Mains Paper 3 : Indian Economy |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Nothing much

Mains level : Moody rated India down


Context

Rating agency Moody’s has reacted to the turbulence in the economy. It revised the outlook on its sovereign rating for India from stable to negative.

Moody’s rating

    • Moody’s India rating is a little higher than that of Standard & Poor’s.
    • The outlook revision will compensate for its past optimism in India. 

Signals it gives

    • It warns that if the economy fails to bounce back soon enough, the sovereign rating could go bad. 
    • Impact of slowdown – it impacts the fiscal deficit and borrowings.
    • Tax revenue – tax revenue growth is nowhere near budgeted levels. With the slowdown extending into the third quarter, tax revenues will further undershoot. 
    • What it means for government – the government has been forced to spend more to give a leg up to the economy. More than just pushing expenditure on capital projects, the government gave away corporate tax concessions last month.
    • Missed Fiscal deficit – Even with the boost from the ₹1.76 lakh crore dividend payout from RBI, it appears that the government will miss the fiscal deficit target of 3.3% of GDP. Moody has projected that the deficit will slip to 3.7% of GDP this fiscal. 
    • Only positive – India’s borrowings are almost wholly domestic. External debt to GDP is just 20% but the ratings do have an impact on investor sentiment.

Hope lies ahead

    • Signs of revival – the Moody’s outlook revision comes when there are faint signs of a revival in the economy. It may be another quarter or two before growth picks up. The festive season uptick in sales of automobiles and white goods points to the return of the consumer to the market. 
    • Bank creditincrease in the bank credit offtake reported by the RBI for the second successive fortnight is positive news.

Way ahead

    • The government needs to press the reforms harder.
    • There is every need to debug GST. 
    • There is a need to go big on disinvestment in the remaining four months of this fiscal. The target of ₹1.05 lakh crore has to be met with a wide margin to contain fiscal deficit slippage. 
    • The supportive measures announced in the last two months should be closely monitored for implementation.
Communicable and Non-communicable diseases – HIV, Malaria, Cancer, Mental Health, etc.

[op-ed snap] The China factor in India’s RCEP move

Mains Paper 2 : Bilateral, Regional and Global Groupings and agreements involving India |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Nothing much

Mains level : RCEP - India - China


Context

India finally rejected the RCEP trade deal. 

India’s stand

    • In his speech at the RCEP summit, PM argued that India has been proactively, constructively and meaningfully engaged in the RCEP negotiations since inception.
    • The draft RCEP agreement did not fully reflect the basic spirit and the agreed guiding principles of RCEP and did not address satisfactorily India’s outstanding issues and concerns.

RCEP

    • Apart from the 10 member states of the ASEAN, the deal was to include the bloc’s six free trade partners — China, India, South Korea, Japan, New Zealand, and Australia.
    • The RCEP negotiations were launched in 2012 and, this year, there was a big push to get it finalised. 
    • After India’s rejection, the remaining 15 members decided to go ahead and underlined their intent to sign a trade deal sometime next year.

Indian demands

    • Base year – Shifting the base year for tariff cuts from 2014 to 2019.
    • Import surge – avoiding a sudden surge in imports from China by including a large number of items in an auto-trigger mechanism.
    • Rules of origin – stricter rules of origin to prevent dumping from China
    • Services – a better deal in services. 

Indian concerns

    • Trade deficits – India runs large trade deficits with at least 11 of the 15 RCEP members. China alone accounts for $53 billion of India’s $105 billion trade deficit with these. 
    • Domestic industry – China’s need for greater access to the Indian market to sustain its manufacturing industries will hurt the Indian industry and farmers due to a surge in Chinese imports.
    • FTA experience – India’s experience with FTAs has been underwhelming. Niti Aayog suggested that FTA utilisation is in the 5%-25% range. 
    • Domestic oppositionDomestically, the RCEP generated considerable opposition with major stakeholders coming out against it – farmers, dairy industry or the corporate sector. 

RCEP – India

    • It comprises half of the world population and accounts for nearly 40% of the global commerce and 35% of the GDP. RCEP would have become the world’s largest FTA after finalisation, with India being the third-biggest economy in it. 
    • Without India, the RCEP does not look as attractive as it had seemed during negotiations. 
    • Divided ASEAN – ASEAN has been keen on a diversified portfolio so that member states can deal with major powers and maintain their strategic autonomy. ASEAN member states have tried to keep the U.S. engaged in the region. 
    • Act East policy has been well received. With China’s rise in the region, ASEAN member states have been keen on Indian involvement in the region. 
    • Indo-Pacific – India’s entire Indo-Pacific strategy might be open to question if steps are not taken to restore India’s profile in the region. 
    • Rejected China’s dominance – India signalled that, despite the costs, China’s rise has to be tackled both politically and economically.

China in the region

    • Escalating Sino-U.S. trade tensions – China was particularly keen to see a successful conclusion of the RCEP summit and had been vigorously pushing for that. 
    • Increased domination – Both geopolitically and geo-economically, China is set to dominate the Indo-Pacific. 
    • Counter to Chinese – Japan is now suggesting that it would work towards a deal that includes India. 

Way ahead for India

    • Economic isolation is not an option for India.
    • Bilateral pacts – There are reports that India will move towards bilateral trade pacts. 
    • Need domestic reforms – India will have to prepare itself more fully to take advantage of such pacts. Domestic reforms will be the need of the hour.
Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)

Explained: The fall of the Berlin Wall and how it impacted geo-politics

Mains Paper 1 : Communalism, Secularism, Regionalism |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Berlin Wall

Mains level : Significance of fall of Berlin Wall



News

  • Today marks 30th anniversary of the fall of Berlin Wall and Google has celebrated this with a doodle.

The Berlin Wall

  • It was a concrete barrier that cut across and divided the city of Berlin from 1961 to 1989 and was constructed in the aftermath of the Second World War.
  • After the Wall was fully dismantled in 1989, it led to the reunification of a divided Germany and its people.
  • However it also came to symbolize the fall of the ‘Iron Curtain’ that had divided the Eastern Bloc from Western Europe during the Cold War.

Why was it built?

Germany’s defeat

  • After Germany’s defeat in the war, the Allied powers — the US, the UK, France and the Soviet Union — took control of Germany’s territorial borders and divided it into four zones managed by each Allied power.
  • The capital Berlin was also subjected to this division, despite the city falling mostly inside the zone controlled by the Soviet Union.
  • Two year after the Allied powers had gained control of Germany, political divisions arose between the Allied powers and the Soviet Union over several socio-political aspects that were meant to determine Germany’s future.

The Marshall Plan

  • The most contentious of all however, was the proposal for the extension of the Marshall Plan, a reconstruction plan signed by then US Prez Harry Truman in 1948.
  • The plan aimed to provide economic assistance to Western Europe for reconstruction efforts after the Second World War.
  • The Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin did not approve of this plan because the proposal did not align with Stalin’s vision of a united communist Germany within the Eastern Bloc.

The Berlin Blockade

  • The Berlin Blockade in 1948 set the ground for the start of the construction of the Berlin Wall and in 1949 the Soviet Union declared the existence of the German Democratic Republic, also known as East Germany.
  • In 1961, the borders between East and West Germany were closed, and the division cost common people their homes, families, jobs and changed their lives irrevocably, creating two separate nations built on different socio-political and economic ideologies.
  • This was separated by blocks of concrete that were collectively 140 km longIt took take almost three decades for the Berlin Wall to come down.

Why did the Berlin Wall fall?

  • Civil unrest across East and West Germany put pressure on the East Germany administration to loosen some travel restrictions.
  • Günter Schabowski, a political leader in East Germany had been tasked with the job of announcing the easing of travel restrictions but had not been given full information regarding when the new travel regulations.
  • At a press conference on November 9 when Schabowski was asked when the new regulations would be put into effect, he stated that it was with immediate effect.
  • East Germans who were listening to the live news broadcast rushed to the checkpoints at the Berlin Wall in droves, seeking entry.
  • Armed guards at the checkpoints had not been given instructions on how to handle the crowds and outnumbered checkpoint guards began allowing people to cross without any significant checks.
  • Crowds began climbing on top of the Berlin Wall and the atmosphere changed entirely. It was the day the Berlin Wall was brought down.

Global consequences of the Fall of the Berlin Wall

Formation of EU

  • After the fall of the Berlin Wall, decades of separation and unaligned socio-economic development brought several differences between East and West Berlin to the fore.
  • Eastern Europe was dramatically altered with political changes requiring a reexamination of alliances within Europe.
  • These changes resulted in the Maastricht Treaty of 1992 that led to the formation of the European Union in 1993.

Rise of Asian Tigers

  • Following the end of the WW II and the Korean War, East Asia and Southeast Asia were slowly beginning to emerge from the ravages of the wars, relying on what was left of colonial infrastructure and post-colonial economic assistance.
  • Many relied on China for economic support to build their own economies over the next decade.
  • Of the nations in the region, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea came to be known as the ‘Asian Tigers’, and became models for good governance and development and “miracle” economies.
  • Their socio-economic models of development were so robust that these countries escaped relatively unscathed from the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997.

Rise of regional powers

  • After the Soviet Union collapsed, China witnessed an unprecedented rise in importance not only in the region, but also in the world political order.
  • The Soviet Union’s collapse also impacted Cuba and its economy which was reliant on financial subsidies from Moscow.

Birth of Taliban

  • The fall of the Berlin Wall also coincided with Russia’s withdrawal from Afghanistan.
  • Despite the wishes of Soviet-backed Afghanistan President Mohammad Najibullah, Soviet troops began withdrawing from the country.
  • The Mujahideen began their offensives against the Afghan army with more vigor knowing that the army did not have the support of Soviets anymore.
  • Civil unrest and war continued in the country with the fall of the Najibullah government in 1992 and was ongoing till the Taliban came to power in 1996 and brought even more war and unrest in Afghanistan.
History- Important places, persons in news

Role of Governor in State govt. formation

Mains Paper 2 : Indian Constitution - historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Hung Assembly

Mains level : Role of Governor in State govt. formation


Context

  • Usually, the moment an election is won or lost, the CM resigns and is then asked by the Governor to continue as ‘caretaker’ until a new government is in place.
  • It has been two weeks since the results of the Assembly election were announced, but no party has staked claim yet to form a government.

What is the Governor’s role in such circumstances?

  • The Governor would be expected to go as per an order of preference set out in the Sarkaria Commission recommendations, which have also been ratified by the Supreme Court.
  • By the order of preference, the Governor can invite
  1. a pre-poll alliance of parties;
  2. invite the single largest party which stakes a claim to form the government;
  3. invite a post-poll alliance of parties, with all the partner in the coalition joining the government or
  4. invite post-poll alliances of parties, with some becoming part of the government and some supporting from outside.

What happens if any of these parties is invited to form the government?

  • Once any formation is sworn in, it will need to pass the floor test, which will reveal whether the executive enjoys the confidence of the legislature as mandated by the Constitution.
  • In the floor test, the person sworn in as the CM has to prove that s/he enjoys the confidence of the House.
  • If the confidence motion fails, the Chief Minister has to resign.
  • If more than one person stake claim to form the government and the majority is not clear, the Governor has the powers to call a special session to assess who has the majority.
  • The date for the floor test is decided by the Governor in consultation with the new government.

If no government can be formed is President’s rule likely?

  • Article 356 of the Constitution provides for the imposition of President’s Rule in a state in “case of failure of the constitutional machinery in the state”.
  • As per the constitutional stipulation, it can be imposed in cases where the President, on receipt of report from the Governor of the state or otherwise, is satisfied.
  • This is in a situation in which the government of the state cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.

When is Prez Rule likely?

  • In Maharashtra’s current case, imposition of the President’s rule is still a remote possibility.
  • According to legal experts, Governor would first need to exhaust all options and possibilities of government formation before making any such recommendation.
  • He will first have to hold consultations with all parties to examine if any one of them is in a position to cobble together the numbers required.
  • Only after he is satisfied that no party or alliance can form a stable government would he recommend imposition of President’s rule.
President’s Rule

SPG protection

Mains Paper 3 : Various Security Forces, Agencies & Their Mandates |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : SPG

Mains level : Security issues associated with VIPs



News

  • The Union government is expected to take away the security cover by Special Protection Group (SPG) being provided at present to Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi.
  • They will, however, continue to get a Z+ security cover, where they will be provided commandos belonging to the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF).

How are security levels decided?

  • The Union Home Ministry takes this call after evaluating the inputs from all the intelligence agencies such as the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW).
  • However, since none of the intelligence agencies is accountable to any external statutory body, barring internal oversight by ministries of Home and Foreign Affairs, the issue of security cover is open to manipulation.

What are the various levels of protection?

  • There are largely six types of security covers: X, Y, Y plus, Z, Z plus and SPG.
  • While SPG is meant only for the PM and his immediate family, other categories can be provided to anyone about whom the Centre or state governments have inputs about facing a threat.
  • X category: This on an average entails just one gunman protecting the individual;
  • Y category: It has one gunman for mobile security and one (plus four on rotation) for static security; Y plus has two policemen on rotation for security and one (plus four on rotation) for residence security;
  • Z category: It has six gunmen for mobile security and two (plus eight) for residence security; Z plus has 10 security personnel for mobile security and two (plus eight) for residence security.
  • There are various kinds of covers within these levels as well.

Who are the SPG? Whom do they protect?

  • The SPG is an elite force, specifically raised for the protection of the country’s PM, former PMs and their immediate family.
  • The force is currently 3,000 strong. If the Gandhis lose the SPG cover, PM Modi will be the only one under the SPG’s protection.
  • The SPG is highly trained in physical efficiency, marksmanship, combat and proximate protection tactics and is assisted by all central and state agencies to ensure foolproof security.
  • SPG Special Agents assigned to the PM security detail wear black, Western-style formal business suits, with sunglasses, and carry a two-way encrypted communication earpiece, and concealed handguns.
  • The SPG also has special operations commandos who carry ultra-modern assault rifles and wear dark-visor sunglasses with inbuilt communication earpieces, bulletproof vests, gloves and elbow/knee pads.

When was SPG raised? What is its history?

  • The SPG was started in 1985 in the wake of the killing of PM Indira Gandhi in 1984.
  • When V P Singh came to power in 1989, his government withdrew SPG protection given to his predecessor Rajiv Gandhi.
  • But after Rajiv’s assassination in 1991, the SPG Act was amended to offer protection to all former PMs and their families for at least 10 years.
  • In 2003, the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government again amended the SPG Act to bring the period of automatic protection down from 10 years to “a period of one year.
  • It is from the date on which the former PM ceased to hold office” and beyond one year based on the level of threat as decided by the government.
  • During the Vajpayee regime, the SPG cover of former PMs such as H D Deve Gowda, I K Gujaral and P V Narasimha Rao were withdrawn.
Prime Minister’s Office : Important Updates

Cloud Seeding Technology

Mains Paper 3 : Awareness In The Fields Of It, Space, Computers, Robotics, Nano-Technology, Bio-Technology |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Cloud Seeding

Mains level : Artificial rainfall and its success



News

  • Haryana Dy. CM has written to PM Modi, requesting him to “undertake cloud seeding plan to combat the air pollution engulfing Delhi and NCR”.

What is Cloud Seeding?

  • Cloud seeding is a kind of weather modification technology to create artificial rainfall.
  • It works only when there are enough pre-existing clouds in the atmosphere.
  • Rain happens when moisture in the air reaches levels at which it can no longer be held, and cloud seeding aims to facilitate and accelerate that process by making available chemical ‘nuclei’ around which condensation can take place.
  • These ‘seeds’ of rain can be the iodides of silver or potassium, dry ice (solid carbon dioxide), or liquid propane. The seeds can be delivered by plane or simply by spraying from the ground.

Where all has it been tried earlier?

  • Cloud seeding is not new to India and it has earlier been attempted in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra to address drought.
  • Similar experiments of cloud seeding had earlier been tried in Australia, America, Spain and France.
  • In United Arab Emirates, the cloud seeding technique led to creation of 52 storms in Abu Dhabi.
  • Till last year, IMD had around 30 successful incidents of seeding.
  • Also, such seeding is routine in Russia and other cold countries where the technique is used to disperse fog at the airports.

What is the IIT Kanpur study?

  • The scientists at IIT Kanpur had prepared a project to induce artificial rain via cloud seeding to clear smog in Delhi.
  • Officials in the Environment Ministry had approved the project.
  • The project demanded an aircraft of National Remote Sensing Agency — an ISRO-affiliated body — to fly into the clouds.
  • It would inject silver iodide that would lead to the formation of ice crystals, making the clouds denser and causing them to condense into rain and settle atmospheric dust and clearing the sky.
  • It was in 2018 when IIT Kanpur had got all the clearances from DGCA and Defence and Home ministries for the project. But due to non-availability of the aircraft, the project could not take off.

Did state governments adopt this technology?

  • In May 2019, Karnataka Cabinet approved a budget of Rs 91 crore for cloud seeding for a period of two years. It involved two aircraft spraying chemicals on moisture-laden clouds to induce rainfall.
  • It was expected to begin by June end and continue for three months.
  • Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) had also partnered with IIT Kanpur and agreed to provide Dornier aircraft and their pilots to provide logistical support to the project.

How successful is the cloud seeding technology?

  • The Pune-based IIMT has been carrying out cloud seeding experiments for several years now.
  • These experiments have been done in areas around Nagpur, Solapur, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Jodhpur, and recently Varanasi.
  • The success rate of these experiments in inducing rains is about 60 to 70 per cent, depending on local atmospheric conditions, the amount of moisture in the air and cloud characteristics.
  • Apart from IITM, some private companies also offer cloud-seeding services.
  • It is these companies that have been engaged by Maharashtra and Karnataka in the last few years. These also received mixed success.
Monsoon Updates

[pib] Steel Scrap Recycling Policy

Mains Paper 3 : Indian Economy |

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Steel scrap

Mains level : Steel production and associated factors



News

  • Ministry of Steel has issued the Steel Scrap Recycling Policy.

Steel Scrap Recycling Policy

  1. This will ensure scientific processing & recycling of ferrous scrap generated from various sources and a variety of products.
  2. The policy framework shall provide standard guidelines for collection, dismantling and shredding activities in an organized, safe and environmentally sound manner.
  3. The policy aims to achieve the following objectives –
  • To promote circular economy in the steel sector.
  • To promote a formal and scientific collection, dismantling and processing activities for end of life products that are sources of recyclable (ferrous, non- ferrous and other non-metallic) scraps.
  • It will lead to resource conservation and energy savings and setting up of an environmentally sound management system for handling ferrous scrap.
  • Processing and recycling of products in an organized, safe and environment friendly manner.
  • To evolve a responsive ecosystem by involving all stakeholders.
  • To produce high quality ferrous scrap for quality steel production thus minimizing the dependency on imports.
  • To decongest the Indian cities from ELVs and reuse of ferrous scrap.
  • To promote 6Rs principles of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recover, Redesign and Remanufacture through scientific handling, processing and disposal of all types of recyclable scraps including non-ferrous scraps, through authorized centers / facility.

Background

  • Steel is a material most conducive for circular economy as it can be used, reused and recycled infinitely.
  • While iron ore remains the primary source of steel making, used or re-used steel in the form of Scrap is the secondary raw material for the steel industry.
  • Indian steel industry is characterized by the presence of a large number of small steel producers who utilize scrap with other inputs for steel making.

 Why focus on scrap steel?

  • The availability of scrap is a major issue in India and in 2017 the deficit was to the tune of 7 million Tons.
  • This was imported at the cost of more than Rs. 24,500 crores (approx.) in 2017-18.
  • The gap between demand and supply is can be reduced in the future and the country may be self-sufficient by 2030.
  • The scrap has to be channelized so that the same can be utilized for steel production in an environmentally friendly manner.

Commercial significance of scrap

  • Scrap is an important input for the electric furnaces.
  • If quality scrap is provided as the charge to the electric furnaces, then the furnaces can produce high grade steel.
  • High Grade Steel Scrap shall not have the impurities if processing is done with the scrap processing centres and by shredders etc.
  • The high-grade steel scrap shall be recycled to produce high grade steel again, to be used in the industries such as equipment manufacturing, automobiles and other downstream industries.
  • Scrap with less or no impurities shall result in better long products that are commonly used in the construction industry and is common use steels.
  • If better-processed scrap is produced in the country, it shall result in not only import substitution of scrap but also import substitution of high-end steel that is currently imported in the country.

Climate-friendly

  • Scrap based steel making technologies have been envisaged as one of the important options to reduce GHG emission intensity.
  • This shall also contribute in adopting the principle of 6Rs i.e. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recover, Redesign and Remanufacture to avoid any adverse impact on the environment.
  • There is a worldwide trend to increase steel production using scrap as the main raw material as recycling of scrap helps in conservation of vital natural resources besides other numerous benefits.
Steel Industry – Current challenges, National Steel Policy 2017, etc