Japanese steel exports decreased to all main destinations last month, except for China, and are set to decline further.
In October, total steel export decreased 13% year-on-year to 2.47 million t, according to the provisional data from the Ministry of Finance. Japan’s exports have been demonstrating on-year decline for the sixth consecutive month, as local steelmakers have been focused on domestic supply. In October, exports were flat, compared to September.
The Asian market remained the main steel sales destination for Japan. In October, exports to Asia reached 1.97 million t, posting a decrease of 12.4% y-o-y and 2% on monthly comparison.
Sales to China went up by 6.8% y-o-y to 457,000 t thanks to strong demand from construction and automotive sectors in the country. The volumes to China were lower on-month by 21.9%.
Sales to ASEAN decreased by 21.7% to 770,000 t y-o-y due to tough competition with other suppliers, those from Russia and China in particular. Shipments to South Korea went down by 21.9% to 359,000 t;
Japanese steel exports are expected to decrease by 8.7 % y-o-y to 6.21 million t (5.2 million t – ordinary steel, 1.01 million t – special steel) in Q3 FY2020 (October-December), “considering the downturn in overseas economies due to the coronavirus outbreak,”