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EghtesadOnline: Buying activity in the Iranian flat steel import market remained modest despite all suppliers dropping their prices in the past week, sources told Metal Bulletin.

“There are no bookings; today everybody waits and sees,” one trader said, in expectation of further price falls.

Metal Bulletin’s weekly assessment of import prices for 2 mm hot rolled coil in Iran dropped to $445-450 per ton CFR Iranian ports on April 19 from $465-490 per ton CFR.

Offers from Kazakhstan`s ArcelorMittal Temirtau were heard coming at $430 per ton FOB Aktau. The estimated cost of freight to the northern Iranian port of Anzali is $15 per ton, Financial Tribune reported.

Russia’s MMK offered HRC at €435 ($464) per ton FOB Astakhan, which would be equivalent to $484 per ton CFR Anzali.

Meanwhile, Chinese material was available at $450-455 per ton CFR southern ports of Iran, sources told Metal Bulletin.

“If [the] custom duty is not changed, we shall start to import from China,” one trader told Metal Bulletin.

Currently, there is a 20% import duty for HRC and CRC in Iran, while hot dip galvanized coil is subject to a 26% duty.

The duties were expected to be halved at the beginning of the current Iranian year (which started on March 21), but no decision has been announced yet by the government.

In these conditions, buying activity has remained modest.

“People think of more reductions from China and they must wait to see the bottom. [Some] buying continues [as required], but no stocking is [taking place],” another market source said.

Metal Bulletin’s price assessment of CRC imports in Iran dropped to $520-554 per ton CFR Iranian ports on Wednesday, down from $565-570 per ton CFR last week.

Recent CRC offers from MMK were heard at €500 ($534) per ton FOB Astrakhan, down €20 ($21) per ton over the week.

The estimated cost of freight to Iranian northern port of Anzali is $20 per ton.

China-origin material was heard available at $520 per ton CFR southern ports of Iran.

Metal Bulletin’s price assessment for imported HDG in Iran was $570-575 per ton CFR Iranian ports on Wednesday, compared with $590-600 per ton CFR the previous week.

Offers from China were heard coming within the range, although no deals were reported as concluded.

Iran flat steel Iran steel market Iran Flat Steel Import