An â€˜Oreâ€™ may be defined as the aggregate of minerals from which a desired constituent mineral can be extracted with profit. The most used of all metals â€œIronâ€ is believed to be the ninth most abundant element in the Universe. The tough stuff â€œIronâ€ makes up the earthâ€™s core and is considered to be the base of civilization. The concentration of iron in the structure of the earth ranges from almost 80% in the inner core to about 5% in the outer crust. Iron is not found in the free elemental state. As technology advanced during the middle Ages, the trench was replaced by a small shaft furnace, and from this the present day blast furnace has developed. The use of waterpower to operate the blast was introduced during the 14th century. The consequent considerable increase in furnace temperature resulted in the production of iron with a much higher carbon content than formerly, namely cast iron. This was not malleable but it was soon discovered how this might be converted into malleable iron by a second heating in an ample supply of air (refining). The iron industry received a great impetus at the end of the 18th century, when the demand for iron began to increase as a result of the invention of the steam engine and the railway. The shortage of wood charcoal led to the introduction of coke, as fuel and as reducing agent. Coke was first used in the blast furnace by Abraham Darby, in 1732. The refining process underwent fundamental improvements during the 19th century, through the introduction of the blast refining method (Bessemer Process, 1855; Thomas-Gilchrist process, 1878) and of regenerative heating (Siemens-Martin process 1865). Later, smelting in the electric furnace has been introduced for the production of certain high-grade steel. Iron is the cheapest and most widely used metal. Its annual production exceeds by far that of all other metals combined. It comprises approximately 93% of the tonnage of all the metals used. Iron makes 5% of the earthâ€™s crust, and is not found in its elementary form, but in the form of chemical compounds with other elements in hundreds of minerals of importance. It is the most wanted ferrous metal having wide application in several industries. Iron plays a vital role in development of any country. Iron and its alloys specially steel are mainly used in civil and engineering industries without which the entire mankind could not have come to the modern age of high quality living. Iron ore is the most important raw material for making pig iron, sponge iron and steel too. To cater to different product needs, many steel plants and ferro-alloys industries have been set up in India. Iron ore in different form is also used in other industries like cement, foundries, paint and glass. USES & APPLICATION Iron ore is used mainly for making pig iron, sponge iron and steel. Iron and steel together form the largest manufactured products in the world and each of them enters into each branch of industry and is a necessary factor in every phase of our modern civilization. Pure iron has relatively few and quite special uses. Ingot iron is galvanized for roofing, siding and tanks. In the form of corrugated pipe, it is used for culverts. Because of its relatively high purity, it is suited to oxyacetylene welding, both as material to be welded and as welding rod. It is used in vitreous enameling. Its good ductibility makes it suitable for deep drawing operations as in the manufacture of appliance part, e.g. washing machine tube; relatively low electrical resistance and high magnetic permeability lead to its use in many types of electrical equipment, generator fields, magnetic parts of relays, magnetic brakes and clutches. Iron ore is also used in ferro- alloy, cement, foundry, vanaspati and glass factories. MARKET SURVEY The Global Iron Ore Mining industry's financial performance has been highly volatile over the past five years. The industry weathered through triple-digit revenue spikes and double-digit declines. After two years of extraordinary growth in 2010 and, to a lesser extent, 2011, revenue contracted in 2012 due to plummeting prices of iron ore. However, according to IBIS World industry analyst Agiimaa Kruchkin, â€œIn 2013, industry performance is expected to recover on the back of rebounding iron ore prices.â€ Consequently, industry revenue is expected to grow 4.7% to total $264.3 billion over the year. Profit has been similarly unstable, though it has increased overall at an annualized rate of 5.5% to about 43.2% of revenue in 2013. Despite a volatile performance, tremendous growth over the period has ultimately offset any declines, leading to estimated average annual revenue growth of 14.6% in the five years to 2013. Growth for the Global Iron Ore Mining industry has primarily occurred on the back of higher iron ore output and prices. Strong growth in large emerging nations, such as China and India, has driven the demand for iron ore and underpinned higher prices during most of the five-year period; as a result, industry revenue and profit have expanded rapidly. â€œThe industryâ€™s major players, such as Vale and Rio Tinto, have all benefited from these positive conditions, which have allow these companies to acquire several smaller companies over the period and increase market share,â€ says Kruchkin. Nonetheless, the industry retains its low-to-moderate market share concentration. Total iron ore production worldwide is expected to reach about 2.87 billion metric tons in 2013 (compared with 2.10 billion metric tons in 2008). More than half of this total will be traded internationally. Trade occurs primarily between regions rather than within regions, although there is some intraregional trade in Europe and North America. The major importing regions are North Asia and Europe, while the major exporting regions are South America and Oceania. Following the recession, most iron ore supply contracts shifted from annual pricing (which has been the norm since the 1960s) to more flexible quarterly or even monthly pricing. PRESENT MANUFACTURERS A Narrain Mines Ltd. B G H Exim Ltd. Chowgule & Co. (Salt) Ltd. Concast Steel & Power Ltd. East India Minerals Ltd. Electrosteel Castings Ltd. Essel Mining & Inds. Ltd. Femnor Mineral (India) Ltd. Frontline Corporation Ltd. Gimpex Ltd. Godawari Power & Ispat Ltd. Grace Industries Ltd. H L L Lifecare Ltd. I B C Ltd. Indian Potash Ltd. Jain Granites & Projects India Ltd. K I O C L Ltd. K N R Infrastructure Projects Pvt. Ltd. Kalyani Steels Ltd. Kohinoor Steel Pvt. Ltd. M G M Minerals Ltd. M M T C Ltd. M S P L Ltd. M S P Steel & Power Ltd. Maharashtra State Mining Corpn. Ltd. Mangal Steel Enterprises Ltd. Mark Steels Ltd. Metrochem Industries Ltd. Metroglobal Ltd. Monnet Ispat & Energy Ltd. Mysore Minerals Ltd. Mysore Sales International Ltd. Orissa Manganese & Minerals Ltd. Orissa Minerals Development Co. Ltd. Orissa Mining Corpn. Ltd. P K S Ltd. Rameshwara Jute Mills Ltd. Resurgere Mines & Minerals India Ltd. S P S Metal Cast & Alloys Ltd. S P S Steels Rolling Mills Ltd. S T C L Ltd. Sandur Manganese & Iron Ores Ltd. Sanjana Cryogenic Storages Ltd. Sesa Goa Ltd. Sesa Mining Corpn. Ltd. Sesa Resources Ltd. Shri Ramrupai Balaji Steels Ltd. Soneko India Ltd. Sunil Ispat & Power Ltd. Trimex Industries Ltd. Umil Share & Stock Broking Services Ltd. Usha Ispat Ltd.