Russia’s steel exports down 3 million mt in Jan-Sept, semis’ share up

The Russian Steel Аssociation has announced that steel product exports from Russia dropped by 13.2 percent or about 3 million mt in the January-September period this year compared to the same period last year to about 19.9 million mt, due to higher trade restrictions worldwide and stronger domestic demand.

At the same time, the share of semi-finished products in total exports increased from 53 percent to 56 percent in the first nine months of the year, partly due to lower trade barriers for billet and slabs in the international market. Nevertheless, overall semis shipments abroad from Russia also declined, by about 1 million mt in January-September, SteelOrbis has learned.

Better demand in the local market in Russia has supported steelmakers. The Russian Steel Аssociation has set its forecast for consumption growth in 2019 at four percent, while in its forecast in July it had expected an increase of two percent. Over the first nine months of the year, Russia’s steel demand surged by 8.6 percent, according to the association, while production was almost stable, inching down by just 0.7 percent, year on year.