Indian stainless steelmaker Jindal Stainless Limited’s (JSL) sales volume significantly fell by 60pc to 22,119mt in first quarter of FY21 from prior-year as per a company release. Jindal’s production is down by 63pc to 90,329mt in the same period.
The company claims that its production was impacted due to temporary suspension of manufacturing units along with disruption in supply chains. It recorded a loss of Rs870mn and EBIDTA fell by 75pc to Rs780mn in Q1 FY21.
Despite this, import of stainless steel was higher than pre-COVID-19 level of January. Imports jump by 44pc n Q1 and Indonesia was the biggest exporter to India. Indian producers are awaiting protective measures from the government of India to reduce import.
Abhyuday Jindal, managing director of JSL, said that domestic stainless steel industry was no exception to the slowdown caused by COVID-19. “For JSL too, it was an unprecedented quarter, with operations completely suspended in April. Through agile business planning and a global outreach, we were able to revive our exports in the May-June period, which helped offset the adverse impact of a depressed domestic market to some extent,” he said in a statement. The share of exports in total sales in Q1 was 33pc, compared to 20pc prior-year.
After lockdown restrictions were eased in May-June, the company is inching towards production normalcy. It is also expecting a boost in demand of stainless steel in the upcoming month during festive season, majorly in retail segment. The company is also eyeing the healthcare and two-wheeler segments.
To reduce imports of input materials, the company is expected to mitigate price and inventory fluctuations, release working capital, and strengthen the domestic raw materials industry.