In recent past, some media reports allege that the implementation of Quality Control Order (QCO) on Stainless Steel by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has led to the scarcity of the metal and subsequently price hike in the country. They have also mentioned that only four companies have been given BIS certification. It is unfortunate that such false information is being spread with malicious intent which undermines government’s vision of “Zero defect – Zero effect”. The QCO order is a positive step for promoting good quality of stainless steel, similar to other quality control orders for carbon steel and many other products. Therefore, the QCO neither intends to put any curbs on imports nor creates any scarcity of the metal. Also, the QCO covers only 25 grades of stainless steel falling under the three IS standards namely IS 6911, IS 5522 and IS 15997. All these grades are widely manufactured in India and the implementation of the QCO does not affect supplies in any manner as both domestic and foreign manufacturers have the licenses for these grades. In addition to this, the government has also announced an exemption list for Stainless Steel grades, not normally produced in India, which can be freely imported without any license. A system of obtaining No Objection Certificate (NOC) from BIS on case-by-case basis also exists for the grades, which are outside the three Indian Standards namely IS 15997, IS 6911 and IS 5512. This implies that supply of stainless steel to domestic users does not get affected in any way due to the implementation of QCO. Hence, the variation in the prices of stainless steel are attributable to other factors like input price escalations etc.
Also, contrary to the report, BIS has issued 22 licenses from 11 different countries, apart from 26 licenses given to domestic producers.
Indian Stainless Steel Development Association, which has been at the forefront of ensuring the implementation of QCO for stainless steel flat products to safeguard consumer interest, is in regular touch with its member companies, the BIS and Ministry of Steel to facilitate resolution to any hardships being faced by the industry players.
It is earnestly requested to kindly verify the facts before using any information from non-reliable sources.