India becomes Turkey’s top HRC supplier with competitive prices

Although the gap between domestic and imported hot-rolled coil prices narrowed in Turkey in September, amid the sharp decline seen in domestic mill offer prices on low demand, Turkish buyers continued their imports from foreign suppliers in that month, particularly from India.

According to the latest monthly Turkish Statistical Institute (TUIK) data, Indian mills that were not traditionally one of Turkey’s HRC suppliers, sold significant volume to Turkey with competitive prices again in September.

Turkish buyers imported 120,000 mt of HRC from India in September, although no HRC cargo was imported from India in the same month the previous year. Turkey’s nine-months’ HRC imports from India reached 517,700 mt, up from zero in January-September 2020.

Turkey’s imports of HRC from CIS countries, traditionally Turkey’s largest HRC suppliers, remained strong year on year in September, the latest TUIK data showed. HRC imports from Russia reached 120,600 mt in that month, 87% higher on year, while imports from Ukraine rose by 85% on year to 95,900 mt.

Highlighting that the share of imports in Turkey’s total steel consumption reached as high as 48%, the Turkish Steel Producers’ Association (TCUD) said precautions should be taken to limit these imports, particularly from Russia, Ukraine and India, which were made within the scope of the inward processing regime (DIR) exempting exporters of finished products, such as pipe makers, from feedstock steel import duties.

Turkish buyers’ HRC imports from Japan totaled 24,600 mt in September, sharply down from 64,900 mt imported from that country in the same month the previous year, while imports from China reached 16,700 mt, compared to zero in the same month of 2020.

Turkish buyers also imported 13,700 mt of HRC from Brazil in that month, up from zero in the same month the previous year.

HRC imports from one of Turkey’s traditional suppliers, Romania, reached 12,200 mt in September, up 25% on year, while Turkish buyers’ HRC imports from France totaled 10,800 mt, sharply down from 33,100 mt imported in September 2020, the latest data showed.

— Cenk Can