By Neha Arora
NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's finished steel exports more than halved during the first seven months of the fiscal year that began in April 2022, according to the latest government data seen by Reuters.
Finished steel exports dropped 55% to 4 million tonnes between April and October, as large steel mills held back shipments after India slapped a steep export levy in May while consumption fell in major markets, the data showed on Friday.
Despite a drop in overseas sales, the world's second-biggest crude steel producer was a net exporter of the alloy.
New Delhi in May raised export tax by 15% on eight steel intermediates with major steelmakers, who had hoped to increase their global market share following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, saying it made exports unattractive.
While finished steel output jumped 6.4% to 68 million tonnes, consumption went up by 11.4% to 65.5 million tonnes between April and October.
India imported 3.2 million tonnes of finished steel during the period, up 14.5% from a year earlier. Crude steel production was up 5.3% at 71.3 million tonnes.
(Reporting by Neha Arora; Editing by Mayank Bhardwaj and Vinay Dwivedi)