Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) recorded best-ever performance in September '07 by producing 1.1 million tonnes (MT) of saleable steel, a growth of 18% over September '06. Capacity utilisation of the SAIL plants went up to 120% in September '07. Consequently, during the second quarter (July-September) of the current financial year, production of saleable steel went up to 3.25 MT, which is higher by 10% over the corresponding period last year (CPLY).
The continual thrust on production of value-added and special steels resulted in the SAIL plants producing nearly one million tonnes of steel in Q2, achieving 27% increase over CPLY. This was aided by 32% growth in production of special steels in the month of September '07.
Further improvement in key techno-economic parameters also continued, with lowest-ever energy consumption and coke rate achieved during April-September '07. Production through the energy-efficient continuous casting route crossed 7 lakh tonnes in September '07 and, consequently, production during the current year went up by 5% at 4.2 million tonnes over CPLY.
The captive mines of SAIL produced 6.07 MT of iron ore and met 100% requirement for production of hot metal by plants. Coal production from captive collieries was increased during the year by 43% over CPLY.
The company's domestic sales during September '07 were more than one million tonnes, which was higher by 14% over September '06. Domestic sales during Q2 crossed 3 million tonnes, which was higher by more than 8% over CPLY.
Among new units commissioned during Q2 were Coke Oven Battery # 5 after rebuilding at Bokaro Steel Plant and Bloom Caster at Durgapur Steel Plant. Blast Furnace # 5 at Bhilai Steel Plant was also put onstream after capital repairs during the quarter.