The Italian government should press for the suspension of EU steel import quotas, Gabriele Buia, president of Ance, the national association of construction companies, says in a note.
The statement, seen by Kallanish, voices concern over the congestion seen in all major Italian steel ports as a result of steel-bearing vessels waiting to be discharged when import quotas are renewed. The heavy port traffic is also a consequence of producers importing large scrap and pig iron volumes, and of vessels of hot rolled coil purchased by service centres and re-rollers in recent months.
“It is necessary for the Italian government to act immediately in the EU asking for a suspension of the restrictions on steel imports,” Buia says. “In this way, we will not give further space to speculation on prices that are already bringing businesses to their knees, and we will guarantee the continuation of the recovery of economic activities.”
While the country is hungry for raw materials, companies are suffering long waits to receive their supply. Over 0.5 million tonnes of steel is blocked at the ports of Marghera and Ravenna due to the EU import quotas. This situation is described by Buia as “an unacceptable paradox”. He also warns of the concrete risk that this represents for the economic recovery.
In July and August steel and raw material sellers to the Italian market from the CIS region and Asian countries suffered delays and commercial issues when delivering material, two sources confirm.
Natalia Capra France