Faced with huge stockpiles of iron ore of about 149 million tonnes lying at mines, India should remove the export duty on high grade iron ore fines and lumps, Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI) said today.
"We have large stockpiles of iron ore plus 58 per cent Fe ...So the federation has always been espousing the cause that the export duty of 30 per cent which is there on this iron ore should be removed to facilitate the export of this iron ore," FIMI President Sanjay Kumar Pattnaik said during a press conference.
Pattnaik further said that the huge stockpiles are lying in the mines mostly in Odisha and Jharkhand.
"In 2009-10 the export of iron ore from our country was 117 million tonnes which dropped to 4.5 million tonnes in 2015-16. Last year it was 30 million tonnes and primarily because MMTC enjoys concessional export duty of 10 per cent....But I think federation is of view that this needs to be looked into so that the stock which are lying could be exhausted," Pattnaik said.
Elaborating on the taxation issue, FIMI said that under the Goods and Service Tax (GST) regime all the ores have been pegged at the rate of five per cent. However, most of the inputs and services used for mining of ores are taxed at 18 per cent.
And the service tax on royalty, which was 15 per cent earlier, has been raised to 18 per cent under the GST. So this is another burden and is putting more pain on the non-captive miners, Pattnaik stressed.
In the budget 2016-17, the government removed the export duty on low grade iron ore fines and lumps (Fe content below 58 per cent) in a bid to make the domestic mining sector, particularly in Goa, competitive.
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