EXPORT OFFERS KEEP INTERNATIONAL STEEL PRICES IN CHECK
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
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
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
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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