Exim News

Iran flat steel import prices stable

Financial Tribune reported that hot and cold rolled coil import prices in Iran were largely unchanged in the week ending November 22 on limited buying activity. Customers were held back by the lack of vessels at the Russian port of Astrakhan in October, which pushed up the cost of freight to Iran’s northern port of Anzali from USD 20 per tonne to almost USD 50 per tonne.
The lack of vessels was earlier explained by higher grain shipments from Russia to Iran. However, shipping companies have now said the shortage was due to vessels being moved from the Caspian Sea to Black Sea basin.

In winter, access to the Black Sea market will be blocked due to the freezing of the Volga-Don Canal, Metal Bulletin reported.

One trader said that “Traders are now trying to deliver the material [from Astrakhan] they booked in September, but few managed to get a vessel. The situation [with lack of vessels] is likely to last until April, when the canal will start operating again.”

Under the circumstances, the cost of freight from Kazakhstan’s Aktau Port also increased from the traditional USD 15 per tonne to USD 25 to USD 30 per tonne.

But considering that local producer ArcelorMittal Temirtau usually holds stocks of HRC and CRC at the port and that deliveries from Aktau to Anzali take about two days, Kazakhstan-origin material is now preferred in Iran.

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