Buoyed by a 47 per cent surge in exports, sales of Steel Authority of India grew by 8 per cent during the April-January period of current fiscal at 9.48 million tonnes (MT).
The rise in sales, which the state-run firm attributed to its efforts towards producing tailor-made products to meet the customer requirement, is despite a continuing slowdown in the steel market, SAIL said in a statement today.
The domestic steel consumption grew by just 0.5 per cent during the April-December period of the current fiscal to 53.789 MT, impacted by the economic slowdown.
SAIL had sold 9.09 MT steel during the April-January period of the last fiscal. However, it did not give the quantity of exports during the reporting period of the current financial year.
Production of the company during the April-January period grew by 4 per cent to 10.74 MT.
Sales of the company grew by 10 per cent to 1.14 MT in the first month of the new year.
The steel major is on the verge of completing a Rs 72,000 crore capacity expansion to take it to 24 MT from 14 MT now.
"Most products in SAIL basket registered a considerable increase in sales this January, sales of flat steels rode the wave by growing by 23.5 per cent over the same month last year," it said.
Cumulative sales growth for flat steels in the ten-month period was 10.6 per cent over the corresponding period last year. Flat steels are mainly used in consumer durables and auto sectors, among others.
"We are confident of maintaining the momentum in sales growth, which will be supported by production of better and wider range of products like universal beam, wire rods and wider plates from the new state-of-the-art facilities coming up in phases," SAIL Chairman C S Verma said.
"The uptrend in the first month of 2014 is a firm indicator of the times to come," he added.