Russia’s Tulachermet raises Q1 pig iron output by 2%

Pig iron production at Tulachermet, a subsidiary of Russian metallurgical group Koks, rose by 2% year-on-year to 547,000 tonnes in the first quarter of 2014.

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“We are optimistic [about] future pig iron sales,” Sergey Cherkaev, vp and cfo of Koks Group’s management company Industrial Metallurgical Holding, said this week.

Prices for Russian basic low-manganese pig iron have held steady since early March at $420-425 per tonne fob Baltic Sea, according to Steel First’s latest assessment on May 15.   

Tulachermet, which ranks among the world’s largest merchant pig iron exporters, continues to increase its premium-grade pig iron production to tap into higher-margin markets.

The share of premium-grade pig iron stood at 27% of the total output in the March quarter, compared with a share of 12% last year.

Meanwhile, iron ore concentrate production at Koks stood nearly unchanged at 546,000 tonnes in the January-March period, compared with 547,000 tonnes in the same period in 2013.