• Five main centers of industrial development are north-eastern USA, Europe, Western USSR, North India & Eastern Asia.
  • Most industrial development is located in middle latitude & is closely associated with coalfields & arcs of high density settlements. Tropical belt is characterized by almost total absence of industry.

A) Approaches to factors affecting location of Industries

  • Explaining why certain areas are attractive to industry: It seeks to identify advantages a region offers.


·       Favorable climate

·       Easy Access to sources of power and raw material

·       Proximity to large markets




·       Good transportation facilities

·       Commercial skills

·       Development of subsidiary services




·       1 & 2 are not sufficient to explain location of industry as region with similar advantage do not necessarily harbors  the same industry.

·       Industry must enjoy comparative advantage over other Industry, similarly attracted but unable to compete.




·       New industries are attracted to serve growing markets
  • Second approach explains why some industries are located only at particular location or why some are highly localized & others dispersed.
  • Factors affecting location of industry under this approach :-
Factor How it affects Relevance today Examples

Location of raw material

1. Material must be located within economic distance so that industry incurs less logistic costs (direct cost + indirect cost + insurance, damage in transmit etc).

2.Very important factor for industries which lose weight in manufacturing process

3. Raw material is perishable & may become unusable after some time.

1.It is becoming less important factor as:

a. Transport infrastructure has been developed and advanced.

b. special handling facilities are available

c. In developed nations, few firms are raw material based. They start with semi processed products

d. Other factors like markets & labour supply have gained importance.

1.Copper smelting

2.Food industry


Energy sources

1.Industry using large amounts of energy are  located near energy sources (costs involved in transport of energy) 1.Importance of this criteria is declining as :

a. Fuel efficiency improved

b. Alternate & cheap sources of energy (oil & gas pipelines)


1.Electro chemical & electro metallurgical industries

Water supply &  water disposal

1.Water used for processing, generating steam, cooling

2.Producing a ton of steel requires 2 Lakhs Litres of water, 1 Litre of beer may require 240 Litre water.

3.For many industries water disposal may be a problem, therefore sites with expensive disposal not likely to attract industry

1.Importance has increased over past few years 1.Steel industries.

2.Beer manufacturing.



1.Cost of labour (true cost is not what one pays but what one gets back)

2.Availability of skilled labor

3. Mobility of labour i.e. b/w jobs & areas affect location of mid. Immobile labour attracts industry.

1.Demand for skilled labour increased

2.Companies looking at areas where they can find good managers

1.Oil refineries employs few men & can afford to ignore this factor especially when balances against more critical factor like access to deep water

2.Clothing industry cannot afford to ignore this factor



1.These are attractive to industries whose products increase in weight , or are bulky and fragile because market location for them will reduce transfer cost and wastage during transportation.



2.Food industry such as bread, beer.


Geographical  inertia

1.This factor explains why industry has remained in that region, even after initial advantages have disappeared

2. Physical capital is immobile. It can be mobile b/w uses (eg. cotton mills in Lancashire are now used in light engineering.)

3.It is also encouraged by development of many secondary activities that arise from presence of industry in an area

4. Some industries are locational leaders as they provide material for other industries ( eg steel attracts engineering industry )

1.Industry attracts industry 1.Cotton mills of Lancashire converted in light engineering industry


1. Climate affects location of industries.

2.Regions that have mild climate are attractive for the industry less than northern counterpart ( eg In US warmer states have comparative cost advantage over colder states as southerner workers need to spend less on clothing and home heating , so they accept 20% less wages )

1.Aircraft industry in US moved to south-west partly for climate advantage as hangar heating cost have been reduced & good flying weather provided advantage

Govt. intervention

1.In planned economies location of industry is strictly regulated

2.Strategic considerations (especially during war times, when industry needs to be shifted to safe locations) invites govt. interventions

3.Local laws, tax regions affect location

1.Relevance of this factor increases especially  in developing countries

2. As Inequalities increases in these nations, unemployment increases. All these are threat to political stability

1.US cotton industry form New England moved to South because women there could work at night shifts which were illegal in New England

2.SEZs in India located In coastal cities to bring development to these cities.


Human factor

1.Ultimate choice of location is taken by men

2.Locations are often the result of fortuitous circumstances

1. Not so important any longer. 1.William Morris  established car factory in Oxford because he bought the school in which his father had been taught for his 1st factory.


A) Important Concepts

Concentration of Ore:

  • Removal of unwanted materials from ore is known as concentration of ore. Common procedures: Hydraulic washing, Magnetic separation, froth floatation & Leaching.

Extraction of Crude Metal from Concentrated ore.

  • Concentrated ore must be converted into suitable form for reduction (usually sulphide ore is converted to oxide before reduction).  Common processes are Calcination, Roasting (Oxides are easier to reduce) followed by reduction of oxide to metal.
  • Electrolysis process can also be used for metal abstraction.


  • Process of purifying crude metal, Common methods are Electrolytic refining, distillation, Zone refining etc.

B) Mode of Occurrence of Minerals

Igneous Ore Bodies


Sedimentary Alluvial deposits Oceanic Mineral Resources

1. Large bodies of molten rock/magma intruded into rocks. As these cooled, different constituents separated to form magmatic ore deposits

2.Irregular form of occurrence ; veins & lodes display zonation of various minerals with depth ( For eg Silver with lead )

3. They are costly to mine than sedimentary deposits.


1.Characterized by occurrence in form of sheets rather than veins or irregular masses.


a) process of deposition on the bed of former lakes & seas (USA, Brazil, USSR, S.Africa & West Germany)

b) Decomposition of surface rocks usually under tropical conditions leaving residual mass of naturally concentrated Ore

eg Bauxite, iron, Ni, Mn, clay etc.


1.Certain minerals occur as alluvial deposits in sands & gravels of valley floors

2. Generally confined to those which resist corrosion eg Gold, Silver, Tin.


1.Most are widely diffused as to be of no economic significance. For eg. it would cost 10 million euro to extract 2 millon euro worth gold contained in 1 Kilometer cubic  of sea water

2.Some can be easily extracted such as salts (Na,K,Br)

3.Sediments of sea bed known to contain significant concentration of minerals but technical difficulties in extraction


C) Factors Influencing Mining Activity


Method of Extraction of Ore

1.Open cast methods are cheapest.

2.Other methods includes development of lodes & veins + underground working which involves shrinking of shafts, cutting of tunnels with roof supports, underground railways etc

3.Placer deposits are worked by pumping & dredging


Quality of grade of Ore

1.Ore generally contains less % of required mineral content. Because of low metallic content it will not stand cost of long distance haulage & must be partly processed close to the pit where it is mined. Therefore, Ore digging is done near mines.

2.In case quality of ore is exceptionally good, risk can be taken of extracting it even if it is far away from market as the quality can compensate for the logistic cost.

3.Despite high cost of iron mining in harsh arctic environment of Sweden & great distance from main iron & steel producing centers, Swedish mines are able to offer iron ore at competitive price due to high quality ore which contains 55-70% iron.


Labour supply

1.Suitably skilled & qualified workers are essential

2.Mining often carried in remote areas of great hardship. Local population is sparse & untrained for technical work. It is necessary to attach qualified staff into remote  & unattractive areas which may be achieved by inducements such as high wages, permission of social & recreational amenities, construction of industrial towns etc



1.Links between mining activity & market.

2.Road transport rarely suited for movement of bulkier material, therefore railways are preferred.

3. It plays significant role in determining pattern of mining i.e. whether centralized or distributed. For eg sand & gravel is low value commodity and cost of transport is a major element to its market price. Also the material is carried in small loads to variety of varying destinations when construction of project is started. Therefore, distance over which such a load can be economically transported is very short. lifespan of sand and gravel is seldom long enough to warrant laying of railway lines. Thus, sand and gravel mining industry are highly decentralized.




1. With better technology, ores containing small amounts of other minerals which were earlier unusable have been brought into production. For example, Bessemer Convertor (iron ore containing small quantities of Phosphorous brought into production by it)

2. Improved methods of steel production and development of alloy steel has stimulated demand for metals such as chromium, Nickle, Cobalt etc.

3. Development of furnaces has allowed increase use of scrap iron in steel production. In countries such as Japan and Italy which are deficient in iron ore, rely heavily on use of scrap in iron and steel production.




1.Pattern of demand for minerals is constantly changing in response to technological developments. New substitutes are available now

2.Copper in electrical industry, Aluminum in aircraft industry



Properties of Aluminium


2.Corrosion resistant

3.Good conductor of heat

4.Mallable & ductile

5.Substitute of steel, Cu, Zn, Pb

6.Among all metals, Al is most abundant

A) Production

  1. For mining of bauxite ore. Bauxite occurs frequently in tropical areas where limestone rocks are exposed to weathering
  2. Bauxite is mixed with caustic soda to remove impurities. It is then dried to remove moisture content in furnace, where 50% weight loss occurs. Hence conversion of Bauxite to alumina (Al2O3) done near to raw material site (less wt. = less transport cost)
  3. Conversion of alumina to Aluminum is done via electrolytic process (Hall heroult process). Enormous amount of electricity is required.
  4. Therefore, Aluminum smelting facilities are set near source of cheap electricity or market.

B) Location of Aluminium Industry in World


Major Aluminium producers





Canada & Norway


1.They don’t have significant quantities of Bauxite ore & yet have strong Aluminium producing industries because they have cheap hydroelectricity power, qualified labour force & modern transport infrastructure near to major market (US, 3rd largest consumer of Aluminium , Europe comes second)




1.Has largest deposit of Bauxite

2.Queensland & Victoria (New south Wales) rich in coal




1.It is largest producer of alumina & still imports substantial amount of aluminium from Indonesia

2.Appreciatoin of renminbi –increases prospects for imports

3.Domestic Aluminium smelters are being pushed out due to rising power price.

4.Aluminium increased application in solar panels, mind farms etc.




Aluminum industry has declined due to :-

1.Environment taxes & regulations have inc cost of production

2.Strengthing vis-à-vis Chinese & Australian currency therefore cheaper to import

3.Electricity prices increases—affect on smelting

C) Location in India

  • Al smelting is 2nd most important metallurgical industry in India. There are 8 Aluminum smelting plants in India. Regular supply of electricity & source of raw material at minimum cost are the prime factors for location. India has 5th largest bauxite resource base also.


Plant location Factors






Hindalco, Renukut, UP

Raw material Energy Labour Connectivity

1.Katni, Amarkantak are nearest source of Bauxite.

2.Conversion of Bauxite into Alumina done nearby these sites

1.Hydroelectricity from Rihand dam on Rihand river 1.Skilled labour required but it is mobile as compared to unskilled labour , therefore plant has its own township with all basic amenities 1.Connected to all important industrial regions & parts via rail road network


NALCO (Orrisa)


1.Koraput bauxite mine very close


1.Hirakud dam on Mahanadi river

2.Talcher & Balimela  power plant (thermal) in Orissa


1.Plant has well developed township


VAL (Orrisa, near Hirakud)


1.Koraput bauxite mine very close


1.Hirakud dam

2.Has captive coal mines @ Talcher



1.Plant has well developed township


1.Six km away from NH-6 connecting Kolkata & Mumbai

D) Issues: Niyamgiri hills, Bauxite mining issue

  • VAL wanted to extract Bauxite form the site but MoE (Ministry of Environment) rejected environmental clearance to the project. VAL took the issue to Supreme Court but the court said that under Forest Rights Act (FRA), gram sabhas have the final decision on mining in the notified area. VAL has been unable to utilize full plant capacity due to paucity of bauxite ore. Imports are twice costly as compared to domestic bauxite ore.


It is a heavy industry therefore all raw materials as well as finished goods are heavy & bulky entailing heavy transport costs.

A) Production

  • Iron ore + coking coal + limestone ore required in ratio 4:2:1. Some quantity of Manganese is also required to harden steel.
  • Water is required for cooling, steam generation etc
  • Energy requirement is huge.


Please note the difference in 1st and the 2nd in Million tonnes.

B) Stages of iron & steel industry through history.

  1. Dispersed small-scale production
    • 1 acre of forest needed to be cleared to provide enough charcoal for 5 tons of iron
    • Windy hill side position to provide blast.
    • Demand was local
    • Sufficient iron ore available for small works.
  2. Movement to coalfields
    • Large scale production
  3. Movement to coastal areas
    • Efficiency of furnaces increases which reduced the amount of coal requirement
    • Europe today dependent on imports from Sweden , Spain & other developing countries
    • USA: Lake Superior region has become important.

C) Changing trends of setting iron & steel industries across the world.

  • Till the end of medieval period, iron industry was located near forests as energy was immobile (no electricity and no trains to transport coal etc.)
  • During industrial revolution the industry shifted near to coal fields & not iron ore sites. example Ruhr valley (Germany), Lancashire & South Wales (Britain), New south Wales (Aus), Pennsylvania (US)
  • In 20th CE coal & iron shortage in US & Europe. Therefore, imports increased and industry shifted to coastal areas. For example, in Japan – no coal & iron ore resources, therefore, industry is neighboring coastal areas.

D) Locational factors

Factor Its manifestation

Empty wagons


  1. Ural-kuznetsk iron & steel industries
    • Ural mountain region: rich in iron ore deposits & Kuznetsk basin is rich in coal.
    • Initially iron sent to kuznetsk via railways but the wagons returned empty to Ural. So it was  uneconomic .Transport therefore decided to transport coal to Ural during return journey hence both regions developed as iron & steel industrial giants
  2. Bokaro-Rourkela (Bokaro rich in coal while Rourkela is rich in iron)
  3. Cleveland iron & steel industrial regions.
    • At Pittsburg, steel industry started using local resources but local iron ore depleted & therefore had to be imported from Canada
    • Ships brought iron ore but on return journey went empty therefore Pittsburg started importing coal to Lake Superior region
    • Cleveland got access to both iron & coal. therefore, industry developed here as well despite having no natural resources.

Coking coal shortage


  1. Sweden has high quality for ore, yet it does not have iron-steel industry because it lacks coking coal. It exports its iron ore to Ruhr (Germany) & instead imports pig iron from Ruhr then it converts it into finished goods using electric furnace.


  1. Open hearth system (allows use of scrap metal to produce steel)
  2. Oxygen converter process (Reduced energy requirements)
  3. Japan & Italy which are deficit in iron ore, their industry relies heavily on scrap metal import.

Strategic Reasons

  1. US
    • After world war 2 & from lessons of Aerial bombing, US decided to dispense its iron & steel industry towards west as well. Earlier entire industry was concentrated only in the east.
  2. USSR
    • Before world war 2, Ukraine region was famous but after the war industry was also setup on eastern coast.

Industrial inertia

  1. Reasons :
    • As time progress, industrial towns develop around the units. They have skilled & experienced workers. New areas may not have same supply.
    • Capital
    • Iron & steel industry provide assistance to so many other industries. This discourage from the industry to shift to new areas


E) Important Industrial Locations (Iron & steel) in world

Location Factors






Great lake Pittsburg region


Raw material Energy Transport Market

1.Good quality coke from Pennsylvania

2.Iron ore from mines around lake superior

3.Cooling water from great lakes & local rivers



1.Hydroelectricity from Niagara falls

2.Coal in Pennsylvania region


1.Ireland water ways

2.Railways & roads


1.This region is one of the largest industrial region of world




St. Lawrence Valley (Canada)


1.Iron ore from Qubec & Ontario

2.Coal from Appalachian region (US); softwood form vast coniferous forests



1.Canada has one of world’s highest rates of energy consumption in world

2.Cheap hydroelectricity from Qubec region


1.Great lakes

2.St Lawrence river


1.Machine building for Canada’s huge paper pulp, Lumber & ship building industry



Ruhr valley


1.Coal: Ruhr valley

2.Iron: imported from France & Sweden

3.Water(for cooling): Ruhr river



1.Rhine river & Ruhr river provide access to north sea


1.Dusseldorf: automobile hub; houses Volkswagen, Mercedes etc

2.Hamburg: houses ship building industry.



Birmingham, Britain


1.Coal: Warwickshire & Staffordshire ; limestone from same region

2.Now a days iron ore is imported



1.Dense network of railroad & vast coastline


1.Automobile industry

2.Light engineering  industry

3.Region makes anything form pin to a battleship




Sweden (Stockholm,



1.Though Sweden has one of the richest iron ore resources in Europe, they mostly rely on German pig iron due to lack of coking coal

2.No source of limestone



1.Mountainous terrain & fast flowing rivers leads to large hydroelectricity generation therefore electric furnaces are used


1.Two main industrial regions being connected by Gota canal

2.Well connected rail & road network


1.Gothenburg: ship building industry, houses Volvo , Bofors etc



Western Russia

(West of Ural mt.)


1.Iron ore: Ural region; Volga basin

2.Coal: kuznetsk basin

3.Limestone: central Russian upland basin



1.Hydroelectircity form Kuybyshav dam on Volga river


1.Trans-siberian railways


1.Huge market of agricultural machinery in central Volga region


Northern china








2.Yantez valley


1.Coal: Fushan region

2.Iron ore: Manchuria itself abundant



1.Coal: Chongquing

2.Iron ore: south of Yantez river



1.Hydroelectricity from dam in Yantez river


1.Cheap inland river transport by Yantez river


F) Important Industrial Locations: India

With 74 million tons of steel production, India ranks 4th among world crude steel production (2011). It is the largest producer of sponge iron, in spite of huge production quantities, per capita consumption of steel is low in India (59 kg against world’s average 215kg)


  • Govt delays in allocation of coal & iron ore mines. Process even got slower with highlight of coal block scam & Supreme Court’s stay on extraction of iron ore from Bellary iron ore mine, Goa.
  • Land acquisition is a major constraint to expand our domestic steel manufacturing capacity.
  • Indian steel may face threat from cheap imports (import duties on steel in India are amongst lowest in world). Therefore, India being signatory to WTO, it is difficult to increase them substantially
  • Strong demand in infrastructure and automobile sector.
  • Demand in Europe decreases while in China and India its increasing.


Integrated steel plant in India: location & factor affecting it

Factors Plant



Iron ore

TISCO(Jamshedpur) Bokaro steel plant Durgapur steel plant (WB) Rourkela (Odhisa)

1.Noamundi & Badam Pahar

2.Mayurbhanj (Orissa)

Both within 100km radius



Rourkela region


1.Noamundi (Jharkand)

2.Mayurbhanj (Orissa)


Sundargarh & kendujhar





1.Joda mines


2.coking coal from Jharia & west Bokaro coalfields



Bokaro itself rich in coal


Raniganj & Jharia





















1.Hydroelectricity from Damodar valley corporation(DVC)



Damodar valley




Hirakud project


Water for cooling


1.Subarnarekha & Kharkai river



Damodar river


Damodar river


Koel & sanak river





1.Very close to Mumbai Kolkata railway line

2.Kolkata port(240km)


1.Mumbai Kolkata railway

2.Kolkata port


1.Mumbai Kolkata railway

2.Navigable canal from Durgapur to hugli & Kolkata port


Other info


1.Setup in 1907 by Dorabji Tata


Set with help of USSR(1964)



With U.K.(1962)


With Germany(1959)







Iron ore

IISCO (Hirapur & Bumpur) Visvesvaraya ISL (Mysore) Bhilai (Chhattisgarh) Salem (T.N.)


1.Singhbhum (Jharkhand)

2.Mayurbhanj (Odisha)



1.Kemangundi in Baba Budan hills




1.Dalli-Rajhara mine




Bailadila mines





1.Raniganj & Jharia


1.Region has no coal initially .Charcoal was obtained from wood , now electric furnaces installed



Korba & Kargali mines


Neyveli coal mine



 1.Birmitrapur (Odisha)



1.Locally available


Nandini mines






1.Hydroelectricity generated from Jog falls


Korba thermal power station


Mettur has thermal & hydroelectric power project


Water for cooling


1.Barakar river


1.Bhadravati river


Tandula reservoir






1.Plants located along Kolkata Asansol railway


1.Biru-shimoga railway line


1.Kolkata- Mumbai rail route

2.Bulk of steel goes to Hindustan shipyard, Vishakhapatnam


Chennai port very close



Other info


1.Set in 1923 as private company Mysore Iron & steel

2.Nationalized in 1989


1.With USSR 1959

2.Mainly set to remove backwardness of region


error: Content is protected !!
    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop
    %d bloggers like this: