Pakistan’s steel products and ferrous scrap imports registered a sharp rise in October from the prior year amid continued recovery from the pandemic, according to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). Steel imports dropped from September amid recovering in domestic production.
In October, Pakistan imported 458,840mt of iron and steel scrap, up 27.14pc from 360,814mt in the same month the prior year. However, imports dropped by 12.82pc from 526,326mt scrap imported in September. Imports of iron and steel products rose by 20.67pc to 249,021mt from 360,814mt in the same month the prior year. However, the same dropped by 9.43pc from 274,944mt steel products imported in September.
Importers booked ferrous scrap actively in Aug-Sept when prices had dropped to the bottom. Most mills and traders returned to the market to secure materials as supply was anticipated to be tight towards year-end. Also, the government’s new tax regime worked in favor of importers as they focused on imports of shredded over HMS scrap imports. Later in the month, prices witnessed a sharp rise resulting in a slowdown in demand.
Demand for finished steel such as wire rod, consumed by the infrastructure sector, and HRC and plates, used in auto manufacturing recorded a sharp recovery, boosting imports from the middle eastern and Chinese suppliers. The demand for rebar is mainly fulfilled by domestic production.
Total imports into Pakistan during October amounted to PKR636,036mn as against PKR712,600mn in September and PKR631,908mn in October 2019, showing a decrease of 10.74pc from September but an increase of 0.65pc from October 2019.
In October, imports of iron and steel scrap were worth PKR26,008mn, down 13.11pc from September and up 17.42pc from October 2019. Iron & steel product imports were of worth PKR24,591mn, down 1.55pc from September but an increase of 11.87pc from October 2019.
In FY2021, (July to October 2020) imports of iron and steel scrap recorded a rise of 38.25pc against the same period the prior year. Imports recorded at 1.87mn mt worth $641mn in the period, up from 1.35mn mt worth $530mn from the prior year. Imports of iron and steel products recorded a rise of 20.35pc in FY2021 (July to October 2020). Imports recorded at 908,310mt worth $523mn, up from 754,698mt worth $511mn in the prior-year period.
While total exports from Pakistan in October amounted to PKR342,539mn against PKR313,019mn in September and PKR314,928mn in October showing an increase of 9.43pc from September and of 8.77pc from October 2019.