Global iron ore business will remain strong amid tight supply, according to Elizabeth Gaines, chief executive officer of Fortescue Metals Group (FMG).
During the company’s interim FY 2021 earnings call, Gaines said that recent demand from China, the largest consumer of iron ore, was stronger than expected despite the Lunar New Year holiday. She added that steelmaking activity outside China was also recovering to pre-pandemic levels.
Iron ore supply from Brazil was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, which limited the availability of the material. Moreover, the cyclone season in Australia has already caused two closures in Port Hedland, an important iron ore export terminal. With these factors in mind, Gaines expects the iron ore prices to remain strong for “some time.”
FMG shipped 90.7mn mt of iron ore in H1 FY2021 (ended December 31, 2020), up 2pc from the same period in FY2020. It plans to ship out 175-180mn mt of iron in the full year.
The company recorded total revenue of $9.3bn in H1 FY2021, compared with $6.4bn in the prior-year period. In the same period under comparison, FMG posted a net profit of $4bn against $2.45bn a year ago.