Thailand’s semis imports up sharply in Feb as slab shipments surge

Friday, 27 March 2020 16:54:48 (GMT+3)   |   Istanbul
       

Imports of semi-finished products in Thailand increased visibly in February this year compared to January mainly owing to much higher slab shipments, while billet imports also showed an improvement. Total imports of semis reached 405,496 mt in February, up by 44.5 percent compared to January, SteelOrbis has learned from new customs statistics. Moreover, the monthly import volume was by about 50,000 mt higher compared to an average monthly quantity in 2019.

In February, import shipments of billet amounted to 127,443 mt, up 8.8 percent from January. At the same time, slab imports added about 76 percent month on month to approximately 288,000 mt.

The largest source of both billet and slab supplies to Thailand was Oman, according to the customs data, with total shipments reaching 187,988 mt versus just slightly above 100,000 mt in January. The large part of semis shipped from Oman consisted of Iranian-origin material, according to sources. Direct shipments from Iran were 50,743 mt in February, while no imports from this country were reported in January.

The second largest exporter of semis to Thailand was Japan. It shipped 84,592 mt in February with almost all the tonnage being slab.

Though Russia is still a major supplier to Thailand, it shipped just 32,825 mt of semis to Thailand, while imports from India were 36,596 mt. India was mostly shipping billet to Thailand in February, while Russia mainly shipped slabs.

Nevertheless, falling local finished steel demand due to the spread of the coronavirus will lead to a reduction in import shipments to Thailand, starting from April.


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