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Latin American January-April steel imports from China up 15% on year: Alacero

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Latin America imported 2.6 million mt of steel products from China in the first four months of 2017, up 15% year on year, regional steel industry association Alacero said Friday.

Of the total, 2.3 million mt was rolled steel products and 278,000 mt end-user products, compared to 2.0 million mt of finished steel and 259,000 mt end-user products in the same period of 2016. Latin America was the main global destination for end-user products coming from China in January-April 2017, accounting for 14% of the total.

Chile received 518,000 mt or 20% of the total, followed by Central America, with 508,000 mt, or 19%, and Peru with 389,000 mt, or 15%.

In the first four months of the year, the countries that increased their imports of Chinese steel in percentage terms compared with the year-ago period were: Argentina by 67%; the Dominican Republic by 60%; Brazil by 58%; Ecuador by 57%; and Chile by 43%.

The countries that reduced their imports were: Cuba by 63%; Venezuela by 46%; and Mexico by 20%.

Flat steel products represented 65% of the total at 1.7 million mt, of which alloyed sheets and coils represented 555,000 mt, followed by hot dip galvanized sheets at 370,000 mt and cold-rolled coils with 270,000 mt.

Long steel products totaled 535,000 mt in the two-month period, of which 220,000 mt was rebar and 255,000 mt was wire rod.

Seamless tubes represented 3% of total imports with 85,000 mt.

Meanwhile, end-user products represented 11% of the imports at 278,000 mt, with welded tubes comprising 229,000 mt and wire 49,000 mt.

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