Met Coke making in the country is essential to beat India’s dependence on China: Vatsal Agarwal, Simplex Coke

Simplex Coke is the 4th largest merchant manufacturer and trader of met coke in India and currently has a market share of approximately 5% in West and North India.
Vatsal Agarwal
Vatsal Agarwal
Updated on Jul 20, 2020 07:50 PM IST
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Vatsal Agarwal is the founder of Simplex Coke & Refractory, which is into met coke (used for reduction of iron ore in blast furnaces, fuelling blast furnaces that smelt or reduce iron ore and other bearing materials) production. Currently, it is an essential import substitution product where India is dependent on China. Post Covid-19, PM Narendra Modi has launched the Aatmanirbhar Bharat campaign, which makes it vital for India to produce coke at increased capacities to be self-reliant.

Vatsal Agarwal has recently taken over a BSE listed company, Stratmont Industries Limited. He wants to create a cloud based online coal trading marketplace named to integrate real time stock positions of various traders at different ports present, directly on the portal screen, such that buyers and sellers are able to match their price expectations as per market conditions.

China dictates the coke market by either increasing coke price or dumping the coke price to such a level that the Indian government had to impose the anti-dumping duty of USD 25 per ton on imports from China which increases the profit margin of domestic producers like Simplex Coke. India has meagre reserves of coking coal and coke making capacity, so it does not figure in the world rankings. It has earmarked a huge expansion of the steel industry to meet the population base. Existing capacities at various steel plants within India have aged and they need immediate replacement.

Simplex Coke is the 4th largest merchant manufacturer and trader of met coke in India and currently has a market share of approximately 5% in west and north India. It has installed stamp charging technology in its port-based plants located in Kutch & Porbandar. From there they intend to do coastal movement of coke to Haldia, Vizag, Chennai, Goa port and have also tied up with 7 coke manufacturers to build a pan India presence. Vatsal Agarwal has grown his company from a humble turnover of Rs.4 crores to Rs.100 crores in a span of barely 4 years with key customers like Tata Chemical, Nirma, Hindustan Zinc, Hindalco, Jindal Saw, Essar, Kirloskar, JSPL, etc.

“As per Steel Policy 2017 India has a target to produce 300 MT of steel by 2030. To achieve this target 30 MT of coke making facilities are required in addition to the existing, envisaged facilities and coke import. Presently India is importing approximately 3 to 4 MT of Coke per year,” said Mr P.K. Rath CMD of RINL.

“India will overtake China to become the largest importer of coking coal by 2025,” Fitch Solutions Macro Research said recently. Also as per KPMG report of April 2020, the Potential Impact of Covid-19 on Indian Economy, revealed that goods imported via ocean are in major danger of supply chain disruption.

Simplex Coke also has a piling division which has risen to become India’s largest piling rig rental company, it recently acquired 15 brand new piling rigs and is executing several metro and infrastructure projects as India has a huge infrastructure budget of Rs.111 Lakh crores.

Vatsal Agarwal has recently signed an MOU with the Gujarat government, under ‘Vibrant Gujarat’ to set up new manufacturing as India has a shortfall of coke capacities under the ‘Make in India’ scheme.

Disclaimer: This is a company press release. No HT journalist is involved in creation of this content.

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Thursday, July 07, 2022