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Home > MEPS Steel News - 09.01.2013


Competitively priced Chinese export offers have played a part in controlling price increases in many parts of the world according to MEPS International Ltd, the UK based company of steel analysts. Quotations by suppliers of Chinese material have been used in negotiations between western buyers and sellers to keep price increases to a minimum.

Total Chinese exports in 2012 are likely to show a, year on year, rise of 6 million tonnes. The majority of this extra supply will be long products – mainly merchant bars, wire rod and structural shapes. Chinese import volumes reduced in 2012 but these are confined, mainly, to specialist grades.

At current (US dollar) price differentials, MEPS sees little potential for exports of hot rolled coil from China to the main Western or Eastern developed nations. Supplies to South America are a possibility. China’s hot rolled plate prices are still competitive in international markets. However, only certain mills are capable of supplying suitable grades and sizes for the industrialised countries.

MEPS envisages limited potential for exports of cold rolled coil at this time. Sales to developing countries in Asia are a possibility. Chinese hot dipped galvanised coil is extremely competitively priced in international markets. Sales to North America and Asia are likely to continue – particularly for grades used in construction.

Chinese export prices for medium sections are, currently, competitive in most international markets at this time. Most of the supplies to western countries are for use in fabrication for heavy machinery manufacturers. The price differential between wire rod produced in China provides opportunities for exports into North America and Asia at the December values. Sales to western markets would be mainly for drawing grades. Those to eastern countries would be mesh grades.

Sales of reinforcing bar by Chinese mills to the industrialised and emerging countries in Asia, EU and North America will be difficult to achieve. However, there are prospects for supplying the developing countries. Good opportunities are available for Chinese exporters of merchant bars to all parts of the world.

Source: MEPS China Steel Review -
December 2012 Issue

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