Bangladeshi mills stayed away from imported ferrous scrap purchases amid COVID-19-related lockdown hitting steel demand in the country. Local transporters are facing severe issues, while ship-breaking operations at yards have slowed amid labor shortages. Steel demand outlook is bearish due to the Ramadan lull and the beginning of the monsoon season once the holy month ends.
Supplier yards, however, kept offers firm amid a dip in scrap collection rate and hopes of a strong domestic outlook for May and June in other buyer countries.
The daily Davis Index for containerized shredded Tuesday settled at $478.75/mt cfr Chattogram, down $0.63/mt from Monday. Offers for UK-origin containerized shredded inched down by $5/mt $480-485/mt cfr Chattogram.
With previously booked bulk and containerized shipments in the pipeline, large mills have enough inventories for their melting requirements during this seasonal slowdown.
In the bulk market, US West Coast sellers were bullish despite demand staying under pressure in Turkey. Offers for HMS 1&2 (80:20) were at $485-490/mt cfr Chattogram. Japanese export offers for small bulks increased by $10-15/mt to over $470/mt cfr Chattogram after Tokyo Steel raised bids by JPY5,000-1,000/mt effective April 21.
The daily index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) from Latin America settled at $457/mt cfr Chattogram, down by $1/mt Monday. Latin American yards continued to sell in their domestic market or have shifted their focus to the other subcontinental markets, especially India where bids improved amid domestic shortage compared to Bangladesh.
The daily indexes for US-origin, UK-origin, and Australia-origin containerized HMS 1&2 (80:20) settled down by $1/mt to $460/mt, $450/mt, and $462/mt cfr Chattogram, respectively, amid extended silence from mills. Offers of HMS 1&2 (80:20) were at $460/mt cfr Chattogram, with bids of $450-455/mt cfr Chattogram.
Domestic scrap standstill
Offers for domestic ship scrap equivalent to P&S were unchanged at BDT46,000-46,500/mt ex-yards. On Tuesday, 16mm ship plates were offered at BDT52,500-53,000/mt ex-yards, while import prices for scrapped vessels were at $500-510/ldt cfr Chattogram. Recyclers stayed away from those levels which lowered the generation of ship scrap.
Domestic steel holds ground
Small-and-medium-scale steelmakers cited better profitability for billets over rebars and thus opted to sell the former. Domestic billet offers were at BDT60,000-60,500/mt ex-works Chattogram.
Large steelmakers kept asking rates for rebar are at BDT70,000-71,000/mt ex-works, higher by BDT5,000/mt than offers of BDT66,000/mt by Dhaka-based steel.