Iranian exports slump further despite billet recovery

Posted on 17 September 2020

Iranian steel exports slumped -29% on-year in the five months through 21 August to 2.96 million tonnes, despite a continued rise in production, says the Iranian Steel Producers’ Association (ISPA). Crude and finished steel output rose 10% and 3% respectively to 11.82mt and 8.8mt.

The five-month figures compare to a -32% slump in exports and -9% decline in crude steel output after four months (see Kallanish passim).

Five-month semi-finished steel exports fell -18% to 2.21mt, driven by a -56% slump in slab exports to 452,000t, while billet exports actually rose 7% to 1.76mt, overturning a -2% fall after four months.

Finished steel exports slumped -49% to 744,000t. Long steel shipments abroad dropped -44% to 620,000t, driven by a -47% fall in rebar exports. Flat steel exports slumped -66% to 124,000t.

Direct reduced iron exports meanwhile fell -68% to 169,000t.

“Despite [US] sanctions as well as international restrictions resulting from the coronavirus crisis, domestic steel export regulations have recently become stricter, and exports of semi-finished steel and steel products are subject to a permit from the Office of the Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Industries of the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Trade,” ISPA says in criticism of authorities.

“The sharp decline in steel exports shows that the previous warnings and estimates of the Iranian Steel Producers Association were correct,” it continues. “Indeed, the available statistics show the consequences of anti-export regulations while the country is in dire need of foreign exchange earnings from non-oil exports.”

Five-month DRI output rose 11% to 12.88mt (see Kallanish passim).

Source : Kallanish