EU imports fall despite higher longs intake: Eurofer

EU steel imports dropped 17% on-year in the third quarter of 2022, led by a 15% slump in flat product intake, although longs imports inched up 1%, steelmakers’ association Eurofer points out. Finished steel exports fell 9%, driven by a 15% decline in longs shipments, Kallanish notes.

In the 11 months through November 2022, finished products imports dropped 5% on-year, with flats down 9% and despite longs rising 10%. Reflecting weaker demand from Q1 2022, imports have constantly been declining in volumes throughout 2022, Eurofer says.

Turkey (381,000 tonnes), South Korea (255,000t) and India (238,000t) were the main 11-month finished steel suppliers, while Russia and Ukraine dropped out of the picture due to war. Although imports from India and Turkey dropped notably, intake increased markedly from China, South Korea and Taiwan.

Besides tin mill products (+43%), organic coated sheet (+22%) and cold rolled sheet (+2%), all flats imports declined in the 11 months. All longs imports meanwhile rose, with rebar seeing the highest growth of 22%.

11-month finished steel exports fell 12%, with flats and longs down 8% and 21% respectively. The UK (221,000t), Turkey (207,000t) and the US (202,000t) were the main destinations. Shipments to Brazil and the US rose notably, and to China and the UK declined markedly.

All flats shipments declined, except for hot rolled wide strip (+6%) and quarto plate (+3%).

The EU’s total steel trade deficit thus widened to 1.8 million tonnes in the 11 months versus 1.5mt a year earlier.

Adam Smith Poland