Ministry of Commerce Additional Secretary Christy Fernandez announced fresh
agreements where export of iron ore to Japan and Korea will be cut by 50% to a
maximum of 6.78 million tons (mts) this fiscal year. In the previous year,
export was allowed up to 16.5 mts which included exports to China.
While all of last years iron ore exports was handled by National Mineral
Development Corporation (NMDC), this year, exports of iron ore to China will be
handled by Government owned MMTC Limited.
NMDC primarily sells high-grade ore with iron content of more than 65 per cent
from its Bailadila mines in Chhattisgarh and Donimalai mines in Karnataka. MMTC
is the largest exporter of minerals from India.
Fernandez said that exports have been scaled down because of the rise in
demand for ore for new steel projects in India. This is a welcome step and
exports need to be trimmed down further so only finished goods are exported and
not raw materials. India has the best grade of ore in the world.