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India should explore Pakistan steel market

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Chandigarh, Feb 22 (UNI) Indian entrepreneurs of the steel industry have called for exploring the Pakistan market as Indian steel products are cheaper than the Pakistani range.

''There is a good potential to export products like pencil ingots, long products and hot and cold rolled coils to Pakistan,'' Mr R P Varshney, Executive Director, All India Induction Furnaces Association pointed out. He was speaking on 'Cross Border Trade: The Competitive Positioning of Steel Industry in the North' at the Steel Mart 2006 conference-cum-exposition on Indian Steel here today.

The Steel Mart 2006 was organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Punjab State Council.

Mr Varshney pointed out that there was also considerable demand for steel pipes and tubes in Pakistan. The northern parts of Pakistan get imports steel and steel melting scrap via Karachi which is 1500 km away, making the prices in Pakistan Punjab costly. Steel exported through the Wagah border would be cheaper.

''Once trade relations between India and Pakistan improve, both countries are bound to gain as far as steel requirement in North Pakistan is concerned,'' he added.

While pointing out that steel making and rolling are done on a large scale in Punjab at Ludhiana and Mandi Gobindgarh he said the Wagah border was less than 300 km from these towns.

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