Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Indian finished steel exports up 64%; imports rise 42% in July

India’s export of finished steel surged by 64.2% to 0.770 million tonne in the month of July against the 0.469 million tonne in the same month a year ago, according to a report.
On the other hand, finished steel imports also jumped by 42.2% at 0.798 million tonne in the said month this year against the 0.561 million tonne last year, said the report by Joint Plant Committee (JPC), which gathers data on iron and steel sector in India.
“India was a net importer of total finished steel in July 2017 but maintained its net exporter status for the cumulative period, i.e. during April-July 2017,” it said.
During April-July period this year, exports of total finished steel were increased by 65.5% to 2.807 million tonne as compared to 1.696 million tonne in the same period last year, the report said.
The imports of total finished steel was 2.505 million tonne in April-July period, an increase of 4.7%, as compared to 2.393 million tonne during the same period a year-ago, it added.
The total finished steel consumption increased by 3.7% to 6.905 million tonne in July this year from 6.660 million tonne in July 2016.
However, the overall consumption finished steel was declined by 4.2% in July from 7.210 million tonne in June 2017, said the report.
During April-July period this year, total finished steel consumption in the country surged by 4.4% to 27.911 million tonne as compared to 26.736 million tonne in the corresponding period last year, on account of rising output for sale and imports, it said.
India is third largest country in the production of crude steel followed by China and Japan.
Indian steel exports

Basmati rice overtakes buffalo meat to become India's top export

The basmati rice exports increased from Rs 6,196 crore of last year’s April-June quarter to Rs 8168 crore in the same quarter this year.
Basmati rice has regained its position as the top commodity export from India. The famed rice variety replaced buffalo meat to become the top most export for the April-June quarter.
Basmati rice had been countries key export commodity for years. But since 2014-15 financial year, buffalo meat had surpassed the former, thus becoming the top export commodity.
A report in the Business Standard says, this happened after Iran, which consumes over a quarter of India's Basmati exports to the world had suspended all new orders earlier.
Iran usually suspends import orders during its harvesting season. As per reports, this year the traders in Iran have continued importing Basmati even during the harvesting season.
As per the Agricultural & Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (Apeda) estimates, the Basmati exports increased from Rs 6,196 crore from last year's April-June quarter to Rs 8168 crore in the same quarter this year.
Another factor behind Basmati grabbing the top spot in exports is the decline in the export of buffalo meat. Despite the decline in buffalo meat exports, the revenue earned from its exports increased nominally from last year’s Rs 5445 crore to Rs 5473 crore in present year’s April-June quarter.
While the short lived ban on the sale of cattle in mandis hit the buffalo trade adversely the recent government actions in the export market has had a contrary effect on basmati trade.
Basmati rice exports from India

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Govt plans bulk drugs parks, import curbs to boost manufacturing in India

New Delhi: In a bid to revive India’s active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) and bulk drug market, the government is contemplating restrictions on the import of APIs and has suggested setting up of mega bulk drug parks, a move that is expected to boost domestic production.
In the draft pharmaceutical policy framed by the department of pharmaceuticals under the ministry of chemicals and fertilizers, the centre has proposed “peak customs duty” for all APIs that can be indigenously manufactured.
Bulk drugs or APIs are the active raw materials used in a drug that give it the therapeutic effect. “All APIs which can be indigenously manufactured should be imported at peak customs duty,” said the draft policy, reviewed by Mint.
The government has also proposed that formulations produced from indigenous API and its intermediates (the raw material for manufacturing API) be given preference in government procurements. The move gains significance given India’s dependence on China for bulk drugs. More than 75% of India’s bulk drug imports come from China, according to the department of pharmaceuticals. “It has a direct bearing on the drug security of the nation as a whole,” said the draft.
Ramesh Adige, a former executive director of Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd, said urgent policy interventions are needed. “The requirement of bulk drugs for the Indian pharmaceutical industry was till recently met by API manufacturing in India. But then, China emerged as the dominant player in the global API industry due to its large-scale manufacturing capabilities of APIs and intermediates,” he said. “This subject has been under discussion at the highest levels in the government for last five years now. This is considered to be a national security issue and we should not delay taking action any further.”
To reduce dependence on imports, the government has also suggested monetary incentives for companies, recommending that formulations produced from indigenously produced APIs be taken out of price control for five years. The “price benefit”, according to experts, will trigger fresh investments. “Low margin in API business is one of the major reasons for Indian companies to shift their focus. Each of the companies have gradually shifted from API to formulations. By keeping the formulations produced from indigenously produced API out of price control, the domestic manufacturers will be protected as they will get a price benefit,” said an expert who was part of V.M. Katoch committee formed by the centre to formulate a long-term policy and strategy for promoting domestic manufacture of APIs/bulk drugs in India.
Additionally, the government has proposed setting up dedicated parks in the country where special priority will be given to bulk drugs makers. Pharmaceutical firms currently needs a lot of clearances to set up a manufacturing plant. To simplify the process, the draft policy suggests providing adequate logistics and timely clearances to set up plants. “Mega parks should provide for clearances for plants with minimum interface/single window clearance of various agencies by placing an official of the concerned department including the department of environment within the mega park itself. The state government would be encouraged to set up these parks in a public-private partnership mode,” it further said.
According to the department of pharmaceuticals, more than 60% of APIs are sourced from other nations; for some specific APIs, the dependence is over 80-90%. “Our competitiveness and capability in manufacturing some of APIs has also dwindled. The new pharmaceutical policy therefore needs to address the way and means to restore and revive the API,” the draft said.
pharmaceutical imports India

Finished steel export surges 64 pc in Jul, import too picks up

NEW DELHI: Finished steel export jumped by 64.2 per cent to 0.770 million tonne (mt) in July compared to 0.469 mt in the same month last year, says a report.
Import of finished steel also shot up by 42.2 per cent at 0.798 mt in July this year compared to 0.561 mt in the same month last year, the report said.
"India was a net importer of total finished steel in July 2017 but maintained its net exporter status for the cumulative period, i.e. during April-July 2017," it said.
During April-July 2017, export of total finished steel was up by 65.5 per cent at 2.807 mt compared to 1.696 mt during the same period of last fiscal, the report by Joint Plant Committee (JPC), which collects data on iron and steel industry in the country, said.
Import of total finished steel at 2.505 MT in April-July 2017 was up by 4.7 per cent as compared to 2.393 MT in the year-ago period, it added.
The consumption of total finished steel grew 3.7 per cent to 6.905 mt in July 2017 over 6.660 mt in July last year.
However, the overall consumption was down 4.2 per cent in July as compared to 7.210 mt in June 2017, the report said.
During April-July 2017, consumption of total finished steel in India rose by 4.4 per cent to 27.911 mt from 26.736 mt in the same period of last year, under the influence of rising production for sale and imports, the report said.

Empowered by the Ministry of Steel, the JPC is the only institution in the country that collects data on the Indian iron and steel industry.

India is third largest producer of crude steel after China and Japan. The country is now looking to grab the second spot.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Why India must take China’s warning of a trade war seriously

NEW DELHI: India has not taken Chinese bullying over Doklam seriously. For the last several weeks, China has been warning of helping insurgents in India, invading border areas in Uttaranchal and Kashmir, and a war breaking out soon. It is clear China cannot afford a war over Doklam. That’s why India has not responded to China’s belligerence in equal measure.

However, there is one war which can break out and India cannot afford it—a trade war with China. Recently, India imposed anti-dumping duties on 93 Chinese products. China is not going to tolerate this measure and is likely to respond. State-owned Chinese media has urged Chinese firms to reconsider the risks of investing in India and warned New Delhi to be prepared for the “possible consequences for its ill-considered action”.

An article in state-owned Global Times said that China could easily retaliate with restrictions on Indian products, but added that it “doesn't make much economic sense” for the country. But it warned that a trade war between China and India seemed to be looming after the imposition of anti-dumping duties on Chinese products.

Why India cannot afford to fight a trade war with China at this juncture? Consider the following:

India's trade deficit with China rose to $46.56 billion last year. China's exports to India totaled $58.33 billion, registering a meager increase of 0.2% compared to $58.25 billion in 2015. India's exports to China dropped 12% from 2015 to $11.76 billion.
India exports less to China (mainly raw materials) and imports more (mainly electronics and other manufactured goods which are in high demand). India's pharma sector has critical dependence on Chinese imports used in drugs manufacturing.
China's exports to India account for only 2 per cent of its total exports. So even if Indians boycott all the goods imported form China, it will not make as big an impact on China as to bring it to its knees before India.

Of course, China needs new markets for its manufactured goods, and India is one of those new markets where its electronic goods, especially smartphones, have found a large market. But China can find markets in other Asian countries and even in Africa. It is also trying to create a market for its goods in Europe. It is in no way dependent on India.

China is India’s largest trading partner, but the trade is heavily skewed in favour of China. A trade war when Indian manufacturing ability is limited is not going to favour India. India’s imports from China are crucial at this stage.India today imports telecom gear worth over Rs 70,000 crore annually, much of it from Chinese firms like Huawei and ZTE. Chinese companies dominate the telecom sector in India. In handsets, they control 51% of India’s $8 billion plus smartphone market with brands like Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and OnePlus.

Power is another sector where India has come to be dependent on Chinese imports. In the 12th Plan alone, almost 30% of the generating capacity was imported from China. In the rapidly growing solar energy sector, between April 2016 and January 2017, solar equipment from China had a share of 87% in a market pegged at $1.9 billion. According to consultancy firm Grant Thornton, in 2017, when inbound deals dipped, the Chinese shifted gears and accounted for 31% of the inbound deal value as against27% from the US.

The popular impression is that China is dumping consumer goods into India. But the fact is that India depends on China for capital goods too. Reduction in import of cheaper capital goods will push up production costs.

India can fight trade wars with China only when it has removed the big skew in its trade with China, which can take a decade of manufacturing growth.

India-made garments have the largest pie in US imports in H1

Chennai: For the first time in the history of India’s garment exports to the US, the country has clocked top position in market share in the category ‘men/boys knitwear shirts cotton’ (a variety of knitwear) for the first six months of 2017.
This was attributed to the slowdown in China. Exporters, however, said they will not be able to retain top position. Exporters say that since the US market offers a level playing field, they were able to compete with other countries, but the recent appreciation of the rupee against the dollar will be a major hurdle to them.
The data released by the Office of Textile and Apparel, US department of commerce, show that India exported 8.5 million dozens of men/boys shirts cotton to the US. India’s share in men/boys knitwear shirts import by the US stood at 8.7 per cent in June.
After a dip in 2014, India’s market share has been growing steadily. In 2013, India’s market share was 6.4 per cent and dropped to 6.2 per cent in 2014. From then it has been steadily increasing, and in 2016 it stood at 7.8 per cent.
Contrary to that, China’s market share, which was 11 per cent in 2012, dropped to 9.6 per cent in 2016 and is now 8.5 per cent. In other segments including women/girls knit shi-rts/blouses, cotton, men/boys cotton trousers, breeches, shorts, and cotton nightwear/pajamas, India and others’ market shares have increased.
While China’s loss is India’s gain, exporters are not happy because Vietnam is running India close. Bangladesh is also increasing its market share. The data show Vietnam exported 8.47 million dozens of men/boys knitwear to the US. Tirupur Exporters Association President Raja M Shanmugam said heavy investment increased India’s share in export. “The US is the only country that gives us a level playing field, and that is why we could compete,” said Shanmugam, adding that the country was losing the edge now because production cost was increasing here.
An exporter said: “We will not be able to compete with Vietnam or with any countries because products made here are becoming costlier.”
For example, exporters are quoting 3-5 per cent higher prices after the rupee appreciated, while the hike should be of around 7 per cent to compensate them for the losses on account of currency fluctuation. On the other hand, competitors' currencies have depreciated and they are bringing down the prices.

Friday, August 11, 2017

India Soybean meal exports up 235% in July

India's export of Soybean meal and its other value added products during July 2017 has been pegged at 0.98 lakh tonnes compared to 0.29 lakh tonnes in July 2016 showing an increase of 235% year-on-year, according to latest data from Soybean Processors Association of India (SOPA).

Soybean meal exports during the the period from April to July of 2017-18 financial year totalled 4.69 lakh tons, up 292% from  1.19 lakh tons in the corresponding period last year.

The release added that during current oil year, (Oct 2016 - Sep 2017), total exports during October 2016 to July 2017 is 16.46 lakh tons as against 3.48 lakh tons during the same period last year, showing an increase of 372.72%.
India Soybean meal exports
 Tag : India Soybean meal exports , Soybean meal ,Soybean oil,India Soybean meal

Anti-dumping duty on 93 products from China: Nirmala Sitharaman

NEW DELHI: Commerce and industry minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday said anti-dumping duty is in force on 93 products imported from China.
These products fall in the broad groups of chemicals and petrochemicals, products of steel and other metals, fibres and yarn, machinery items, rubber or plastic products, electric and electronic items and consumer goods, among others.

“In addition, 40 cases concerning imports from China have been initiated by Directorate General of Anti-Dumping and Allied Duties,” she told Rajya Sabha in a written reply.

Agriculture export falls to USD 33.87 billion in FY17

Agriculture export of India decreased to USD 33.87 billion in 2016-17 against USD 43.23 billion in 2013-14.

Agriculture export of India decreased to USD 33.87 billion in 2016-17 against USD 43.23 billion in 2013-14, Parliament was informed on Wednesday.

The reason behind the downfall in agricultural export was the lower commodity prices in the international market, which has made the exports uncompetitive, said by Nirmala Sitharaman Commerce and Industry Minister in the Rajya Sabha.

On the other side, the import of agricultural commodities (including plantation and marine products) in 2016-17 soared to USD 25.09 billion from USD 15.03 billion in 2013-14.

Both export and import of agricultural commodities depend on various factors such as availability, international and domestic demand and supply situation and quality concerns.

The minister added, edible oils and pulses, which are in short supply in India, account for the bulk of India's import of agricultural products
 During the last three years, the share of agricultural exports in total exports of the country has declined marginally and dropped to 12.26% in 2016-17 from 12.59% in 2014-15, she added.

Agriculture export of India

Gems & jewellery Q1 exports rise 4%

NEW DELHI: Gems and jewellery exports grew by about 4 per cent to USD 9.17 billion during the first quarter of the current fiscal, driven largely by demand in major markets like the US.
In the April-June quarter of last financial year, the sector's exports aggregated to USD 8.84 billion, according to the data from Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
The labour intensive sector contributes about 14 per cent to the country's overall exports. The rise in shipments was mainly supported by exports of silver jewellery, and gold medallions and coins.
Silver jewellery exports increased to USD 1.71 billion during April-June 2017-18, from USD 958.65 million a year ago.
Similarly, shipments of gold medallions and coins registered a growth of about 42 per cent to USD 1.51 billion during the period under review.
Gold jewellery shipments recorded a meagre growth of 1.78 per cent during the first three months of the current financial year.
Exports of cut and polished diamonds, coloured gem stones and rough diamonds also reported positive growth.
India's main export destinations include Europe, Japan, China and the US.

According to the GJEPC data, imports of rough diamonds rose by 17 per cent to USD 5.4 billion in April-June 2017.

Imports of gold bars, however, dipped by about 57.43 per cent to USD 569.12 million.
India's Gems and jewellery exports

India’s gems, jewellery export to touch $60 billion in 5 years: GJEPC

SURAT: India's gems and jewellery export is likely to touch the $60 billion mark from the current $43 billion in next five years. India's jewellery trade led by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has prepared a document titled 'Vision-2022' to be presented to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for a plan to increase exports by about 40% over the next five years.

One of those measures is to improve the industry's infrastructure by creating jewellery parks across the country. The jewellery parks would serve as "one-stop" locations for the entire production process. The first is planned for Mumbai. Other aspects of the programme include modernizing smaller jewellery manufacturers' equipment, enhancing the industry's design capabilities by collaborating with international designers and improving its merchandising.

GJEPC chairman Praveen Shanker Pandya said, "The vision document 2022 has predicted growth of the gems and jewellery exports by over 40%. However, there are concerns that the country's new goods and services tax (GST) would limit exports."
Pandya added, "The council was in an ongoing dialogue with the government to smooth out procedural issues arising from the new policy. Among those is the matter of charges for transporting diamonds between the states — for example, from Surat in Gujarat — where most of the diamond manufacturing takes place — to Mumbai in Maharashtra. That issue will be resolved in the next two months."
Since GST took effect on July 1, trading has returned to normal, as it did post-demonetization in November last year. "People thought these policies will diminish the industry, but it didn't," Pandya said. "Rather, we feel these decisions are enabling a level of transparency that we couldn't achieve before."
Pandya noted that electronic payments had increased as a result of demonetization and that cash transactions were being limited. Diamond dealers at IIJS agreed, pointing to a notable shift away from cash.
GJEPC's regional chairman of Gujarat, Dinesh Navadiya said, "The increase in export by 40% in next five years means that the capacity of the diamond manufacturing will increase. Since Surat is the largest manufacturing centre, we expect a lot of changes. This will further drive new opportunities for the manufacturers and create more jobs."
India Gems and jewellery exports

Indian finished steel exports up 64%; imports rise 42% in July

India’s export of finished steel surged by 64.2% to 0.770 million tonne in the month of July against the 0.469 million tonne in the sa...