Stocks of imported plates, hot rolled coils and cold rolled coils at Japan’s key ports of Tokyo and Osaka rose 1.2% month on month to 174,000 mt at end August, data released late Wednesday by Japanese trader Hanwa Co showed.
A Hanwa official in charge of port data said arrivals of imported flat were slow in the month but deliveries from ports to customers was also slow.
“We are more concerned about the movement in September at Osaka because of the huge typhoon in early September that damaged stocks at ports that were soaked with seawater. We roughly estimate about two-thirds of stocks at Osaka may be not be able to be consumed normally,” he said.
Customers would not rush to pick up material as a result and storage was likely to become full, so planned arrivals will have to be delayed, he said.
“It may take several months for arrivals to Osaka ports and deliveries from ports to normalize,” he added.
A trader in Tokyo said overall demand for flat products after autumn was expected to firm in line with seasonal patterns.
“Deliveries from Tokyo ports will be smoother, but how arrivals will be is unknown because parcels planned to arrive in Osaka may be transferred to other ports,” he said.
Japan imported 128,291 mt of HRC in July, down 6.4% year on year but up 6.1% month on month, 81,852 mt of CRC, down 6.2% on year and up 0.1% on month, and 39,306 mt of plate, down 35.7% on year but up 5% on month, latest Japan Iron & Steel Federation data showed.