Amid a COVID-19 resurgence, Bangladesh has gone under strict nationwide lockdown till August 5. All government, semi-government, and most private offices, industries, and garment factories have been closed. Transportation of public and goods both have been impacted on travel and transport restrictions.
According to the government order, the police, Border Guard Bangladesh (BGD) and the Army is keeping a strict vigil on the roads to ensure strict compliance of the lockdown.
Meanwhile, heavy rains affected steel and imported raw material trading in Bangladesh. Unable to maintain profits, many mills have either lowered production or completely idled plants. Only a few large-scale steelmakers are in a position to book imported ferrous scrap. If the situation worsens, Bangladesh could stay out of the imported ferrous scrap market for at least two more weeks, fear participants.
Mills have been unable to generate demand after raising prices. Laborers who had gone for Eid-al-Adha celebrations are yet to return to workplaces. The diversion of oxygen for medical use has also impacted daily production rates.
Imports from India for sponge iron or coal have taken a backseat. Indians are dispatching containers of liquid medical oxygen to Bangladesh via a train dubbed “Oxygen Express”.
The daily Davis Index for containerized shredded, Monday, settled flat at $552/mt cfr Chattogram in a silent market.
The daily index for US-origin containerized HMS 1&2 (80:20) was at $529.5/mt cfr Chattogram, down $0.5/mt. The indexes for Latin America-origin, UK-origin, and Australia-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) were flat at $515/mt, $517/mt, and $526/mt cfr Chattogram, respectively on Monday.
In the domestic market, steel prices are unchanged as the lockdown has nearly halted trading. Domestic scrap, billet, and rebar prices were unchanged. Except for a few governments construction projects, steel-consuming activities remain hit and would regularise only by mid-August.
A few shipbreakers, however, were active in the country paying $600-610/ldt for scrapped vessels. They believe vessel purchases could benefit them when the markets regularise.