EghtesadOnline: Iranian producers managed to sell significant volumes of steel billet to foreign customers by offering discounts.
The mills’ pricing may receive some support from the current market uptrend seen in CIS and Chinese billet sectors as well as in imported steel scrap in Turkey, Metal Expert reported.
Starting early February, Iran sold at least 105,000 tons of steel billet to customers from Middle East and Southeast Asia. The sellers agreed to offer discounts of $10 per ton and fixed the rate at $360‑365 per ton FOB but later pulled offers back up as the market trend became positive.
Esfahan Steel Company, in particular, managed to sell 50,000 tons for February end shipment at $360‑365 per ton FOB early this month to buyers from the UAE, Oman and the Philippines, according to Financial Tribune.
Last week, Iran’s largest billet exporter Khouzestan Steel Company sold 30,000 tons to Oman and 25,000 tons to Thailand for March-April shipment at $365 per ton FOB.
Current offers for square billet from Iran are priced at $370‑375 per ton FOB with KSC standing at the higher end of the range.
“Most probably we will open the new tender for end-March shipment and manage to conclude the deals at higher prices than last time,” said an ESCO representative.
Since billet sellers from the CIS are aiming to get $400 per ton FOB, Iranian mills may insist on higher offers in the near future.
“They will try to increase offer prices further,” said a market source.