JOINT PLANT COMMITTEE – 50 YEARS OF REMARKABLE EVOLUTION
Joint Plant Committee (JPC) is the only institution in the country, officially empowered by the Ministry of Steel, Government of India to collect data on the Indian iron and steel industry and over the last significant 50 years of its operation, it has embellished its position in the creation and maintenance of a complete and non-partisan databank on this industry.
Constituted in 1964 by the Government of India for formulating guidelines for production, allocation, pricing and distribution of iron and steel materials, JPC underwent a major transformation in 1992,when following the de-regulation of Indian steel industry, it moulded itself into a facilitator for industry, focusing on giving form to a comprehensive and non-partisan databank – the first of its kind in the country – on the Indian iron and steel industry.
Its vast experience in different fields of data related work and accumulated knowledge on industry –structure, operation, dynamics – has helped reap rich dividends with the result that today, the JPC database is a much sought-after source of authentic and reliable information on Indian steel industry, used extensively in the formulation of key economic parameters like the WPI, IIP, GDP of the Government of India, among others.
JPC is headquartered at Kolkata with regional offices in New Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai, engaged in data collection and industry liaison and the year 2014 saw the milestone development of the opening of its extension centre in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, in a bid to consolidate and further shar pen the accuracy of its data and data collection system at the regional level. T he Economic Research Unit (ERU) at New Delhi serves as a wing of JPC to carry out techno-economic studies and policy analysis. JPC is headed by Joint Secretary to Government of India, Ministry of Steel as its Chairman and has representatives from SAIL, RINL, Tata Steel and Railway Board as its esteemed Members.
A Look at the Database
The database includes a rich repertoire of significant data elements and includes:
Managing and Maintaining the Database
A slew of activities performed round the year by the Regional Offices of JPC in sync with the JPC Headquarters at Kolkata ensure that the database remains updated and of use to all stakeholders. The range of activities includes:
Dissemination of Information
A range of publications and data reports, on monthly and annual basis ensure the spread of information and data to all stakeholders of industry. Leading JPC Publications include:
Studies: Conducted under the aegis of the Ministry of Steel, Government of India, JPC from time to time, has undertaken studies in emerging markets/segments to understand the pattern and nature of growth as also the prospects for the same in association with industry. 2014 saw the release of the much-awaited study report, ‘Assessment of Steel Demand in Rural India’, which had brought out, for the first-time ever, insight into the pattern and level of steel consumption in the modern day Indian rural market. Currently, a Study on end-use-wise assessment of domestic steel consumption – geared to find out how much steel is consumed and is likely to be consumed in a particular segment, has been taken up by JPC and includes an end-use-wise assessment of domestic steel consumption but also projected demand, end-use/category/grade/size-wise.
In its role as a facilitator, JPC extends myriad support services with the objective to provide varied support to steel industry / Ministry of Steel on different issues related to development of industry like the Steel Consumers’ Council meetings of Ministry of Steel, the ‘Steel Pavilion’ of Ministry of Steel in the annually-held ‘India International Trade Fair’ (IITF), New Delhi among others.
Towards Newer Horizons ……
Rich in information and expertise gained over the last eventful 50 years of its operation and association with the Indian steel industry, JPC is currently contemplating further extension of its database, developing new reports / formats of reporting and upgrade its website to offer instant access to more new features and aspects, thereby offering value-added services to different stakeholders of industry, as it awaits policy directions towards greater empowerment and greater offering in terms of data and information to all.