Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI) has said that the import of low quality copper scrap at lower price is causing adverse impact on the quality of end-products which are used in critical applications like housing, wire and coil applications which are prone to fire hazards due to lower conductivity and high resistance of such scrap-made copper wires.
The statement came after finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget speech announced that the concessional basic customs duty of 2.5 per cent on copper scrap is being continued to ensure the availability of raw materials for secondary copper producers who are mainly in the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector.
FIMI said that it is of the view that to restrict the import of low quality copper, there is need to have an effective regulatory monitoring mechanism. To discourage imports of low quality copper scrap, FIMI had requested for an increase in the basic customs duty from 2.5 to 7.5 per cent and sought stringent customs and physical inspection at ports importing the metal scrap. But the government has announced the continuation of the basic customs duty. FIMI, however, hailed the Union Budget 2023-24 for the 33 per cent hike in the capex outlay for infrastructure. It said this in turn will give much needed boost and impetus to the Indian mineral and metals sector.