New Delhi, Apr 3: The public sector company Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), which entered its golden jubilee year of production in February, ended the year 2007-08 with new landmarks in performance by producing 13.04 Million Tonnes (MT) of saleable steel for the first time.
According to a SAIL release issued here today, this was a consequence of several initiatives like utilising full potential of available assets and human resources, research and development (R&D) interventions, implementation of de-bottlenecking schemes. The production of hot metal and crude steel was also highest-ever at 15.2 MT and 14 MT, respectively.
About 4.65 Lakh Tonnes (LT) of additional saleable steel was produced during the year by utilising 118 per cent of rated capacity, improving operational efficiency and bold innovative measures adopted by employees. The company also achieved highest-ever sales during FY '08 at 12.4 MT. The financial results of SAIL for 2007-08 will be announced in May 2008. The highest-ever production of 1.2 MT of saleable steel in March 2008 was the highlight of this record annual performance, matched by record March sales of 1.3 MT.
During 2007-08, the component of finished steel in saleable steel went up to at 10.8 MT (up 83 per cent) with improved performance of finishing mills. Growth of 30 per cent was recorded in production of special steels and value-added items during 2007-08 at 3.7 MT.
There was marked improvement in various categories of special steel some of those includes, electrode-quality wire rods (22 per cent), TMT HCRM wires and rounds (731 per cent), LPG-grade HR coils/sheets/plates (11 per cent), SAILCOR HR/CR coils (44 per cent), among others.
The company achieved highest-ever production of rails at 911,000 tonnes. Long rail production exceeded the one LT mark, higher by 58 per cent.
The captive mines of SAIL met 100 per cent iron ore requirement of the company's steel plants by producing around 25.7 MT of iron ore during the year. Coal production by the company's captive collieries almost doubled to 1.018 MT.
SAIL achieved lowest-ever values in specific energy consumption (6.95 giga calorie per tonne of crude steel), coke rate (535 kgs per tonne of hot metal) and metallic input (1,134 kgs per tonne of crude steel), among other efficiencies.
Production through the energy-saving continuous casting route rose to 8.9 MT, a growth of seven per cent, with capacity utilisation at a record 128 per cent during the year.
SAIL also recorded best-ever labour productivity at 213 tonnes per man during the year, with Bhilai Steel Plant reaching a level of 288 tonnes per man.
At 11.9 MT, SAIL achieved highest-ever domestic sales during 2007-08. Sales of value-added products by SAIL showed substantial growth during the year: rails 54 per cent, plates eight per cent and HR coils seven per cent, among others.
Sales of steel products used by the common man also grew considerably, like TMT bars at 53 per cent and medium structurals at 15 per cent. Record supplies of 2.4 MT - a growth of a whopping 32 per cent - was made for projects of national significance to meet the critical requirements of key sectors like airports, railways, Metro Rail, highways and power projects.
During 2007-08, the company expanded its distribution network to every district of the country. With addition of 1,200 dealers during the year, the number of SAIL dealers in the country has gone up to 1,897. This resulted in sales through dealers increasing by 300 per cent during the year in which the company also made eight new warehouses operational for better customer service.