EU quotas pull down Turkey’s 11-month HRC exports by 11.5%

Turkish mills’ overall HRC exports during January-November declined by 11.5% year on year to 2.4 million mt, mostly due to the trade barriers by the European Union, which is traditionally Turkey’s top HRC export destination.

Quotas and the European Commission’s definitive anti-dumping duties on imports of HRC from Turkey which came into force on July 5, notably restricted Turkish mills’ exports to the region in 2021.

According to the latest monthly Turkish Statistical Institute (TUIK) data sent to S&P Global Platts Dec. 31, exports to Italy, which was Turkey’s traditionally top HRC export destination fell sharply by 30% on the year to 578,600 mt in January-November 2021, while exports to another South European country, Spain, totaled 339,000 mt in that period, up 6.6%.

Turkish mills’ HRC exports to Belgium remained notably above last year at 163,300 mt in the first eleven months, up 85% on the year, while exports to other European countries remained notably lower on the year due to quotas and AD duty.

Despite the decline seen in exports to the EU, Turkish mills managed to increase their HRC shipments to the US as prices there stood notably above other market prices, especially in the first half of the year. Turkish mills’ eleven-months HRC exports to the US totaled 343,000 mt, sharply up from 11,200 mt exported in January-November 2020.

Turkish mills also raised their HRC exports to another North America country, Canada, in January-November by shipping 135,500 mt, versus zero in the same period the previous year.

As the decline in export volumes to the EU region continued in December, and demand remained low in the domestic market due to ongoing exchange rate fluctuations in the country, the pressure on Turkish mills’ HRC prices has been ongoing, amid sharply increased mills’ energy costs with the latest hikes on Jan. 1, sources said.

— Cenk Can