• Technology & innovation are need of the hour to manage competitiveness; minimize environmental impact

NEW DELHI : Dr VK Saraswat, Member, NITI Aayog on 1st July said that the Indian iron and steel industry with its strong forward and backward linkages, contributes significantly to the overall growth and development of the economy. “Technology and innovation are the need of the hour as through this we will be able to manage the competitiveness and minimize the environmental impact,” he added.

Addressing the webinar ‘Steel Technology & Innovations – Increasing Productivity & Technology Quotient’, organised by FICCI, Dr Saraswat said that digital technologies are important to improve the efficiency and output of Indian steel sector. “Digital revolution certainly has to be harnessed. Digital technologies are changing the world and improving the way organisations work. Steel and Metal manufacturers have a huge opportunity to transform their operational models by adopting digital technologies and enabling them to improve operational efficiency, customer service, inventory levels and profit margins,” he added.

In the digital transformation, he said four levels are key – digital data, automation, connectivity and digital customer access which are crucial for effectively implementing the digitalization process. “This is particularly important for brownfield industries which need upgradation in this area,” he emphasized.

Speaking on the National Steel Policy, Dr Saraswat stated that the policy was created to enable the creation of a self-sufficient steel industry that is technologically advanced along with becoming globally competitive and promote inclusive growth. The policy also envisages a per capita consumption increase to 160 kg by 2030 against 74 kg currently, he noted.

Dr Saraswat further said that in order to achieve a $ 5 trillion economy, the Ministry of Steel has defined a 5-year vision in order to shape and drive the Indian steel sector. “There are 4 dynamic pillars in this which includes the steel demand, availability of raw materials, steel supply capacity and steel trade flows,” he added.

Dr Saraswat also stressed on the need for decarbonizing the Indian steel industry as the sector contributes to 7 percent of the global carbon di-oxide emissions and thereby making it urgent target for decarbonizing. “We have to start using the blue hydrogen in production as much as possible,” he added.