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Indian buyers look for longs imports as local market surges - 15 March 2012

Steel importers in India are looking to import bar and billet on the back of hikes in local market prices caused by increased construction activity in the country, market participants tell Platts Steel Business Briefing.

Turkish, Ukrainian and Russian producers have all been in discussion with traders in Indian ports for billet and bar sales, while one international trader is heard selling out a 21,000 tonne Australia-origin billet position from its own warehouse in South-West India.

Indian importers were keen to import billet from the Black Sea when prices were below $600/t fob, but now that April production stands at $620/t fob Black Sea among some producers, enthusiasm for imports has cooled.

"With the 5% duty and freight of around $50/t from the Black Sea to the Indian west coast, I wouldn't be comfortable booking at $670/t CFR, as that would be over $700/t CFR after duties," one Indian importer says.

One trader describes an offer of Turkey-origin rebar at $750/t CFR Mumbai for 3,000-4,000t received last week, although this was unlikely to win favour as it was in competition with a Chinese producer's offer of $690/t CFR Mumbai for a similar sized shipment of boron-added rebar.

 

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