Japan’s ferrous scrap exports rose to 639,148mt, improving by 28pc from January on rising steel demand in Asia. Higher exports to South Korea, China, Indonesia and Thailand increased trade in February. Scrap exports dropped by 28pc from the prior year, according to Japanese customs data.
High iron ore prices and tight supply of scrap from the US and Europe supported higher Japanese scrap prices in February. South Korea displaced Vietnam as the top destination for Japanese ferrous scrap in February with imports of 251,882mt, down by 62pc from January and down by 10 from the prior year. Asian buyers preferred Japanese scrap as it was competitively priced against US supplies and available at shorter transit time.
Exports to Vietnam rose by 7pc from January to 218,471mt, while down by 39pc from a year ago. Imports from Taiwan fell to 72,002mt in February, down by 6pc from Janaury and down by 32pc from a year ago.
With the resumption of ferrous scrap imports into China on Jan 1, importers booked 12,957mt scrap from Japan in February. Chinese mills are keen on buying scrap from Japanese suppliers for shorter transit and exemption of 2pc import duty accorded to Japan through the most-favoured-nation (MFN) system. Export to China rose by 117pc from January.