Steel output falls 5% at Iran’s private rolling mills

Steel product output from privately owned rolling mills in Iran fell by 5% year-on-year in the ten months from March to January, according to figures recently published by the Iranian Steel Producers’ Assn (Ispa).

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Production totalled 4.3 million tonnes of finished long and flat products between March 20, 2012, and January 19, 2013 – the first ten months of the Iranian year.

Privately owned mills produced 4.5 million tonnes in the corresponding period of the previous year, Ispa said.

Rebar output over the ten months showed a year-on-year fall of 15%, however, which is the largest reduction among all long and flat products.

There has also been a significant drop in Iran’s imports of rebar. The country imported 146,000 tonnes of rebar in the first ten months of the year, compared with 267,000 tonnes in the corresponding period last year, according to Iranian customs.

Rebar price increases in the local market intensified with the depreciation of the Iranian rial against hard currencies in the second half of 2012, and this was a principal factor in reducing local market demand for the product.

Rebar could be purchased at about 13.5 million rials ($1,078) per tonne last June, and currently costs about 20 million rials per tonne.

Meanwhile, production of crude steel by the Iranian private sector has been rising in the current year.

Privately owned steelmakers produced 777,000 tonnes of semi-finished steel products in the first ten months, a year-on-year increase of 8%, according to Ispa.