The Indian Refractory Makers Association (IRMA) has appealed the government to add refractory operations under the essential services and allow them to operate during the lockdown. Refractory makers are awaiting a positive response from the government.
Refractory materials are used in many high-temperature manufacturing processes including iron and steel, cement, petrochemicals, brass, thermal power and glass industry.
Around 60-70pc of total refractory material produced in India is consumed by the steel industry. Most induction and electric arc furnaces have stopped production and primary steel producers Tata Steel, SAIL, JSW Steel, RINL and JSPL have idled some blast furnaces. Steelmakers in India have curtailed production since the government imposed a nation-wide lockdown on March 24. Restriction on transportation of goods has severely hit refractory makers in India.