China Steel Corp (中鋼), the nation’s largest steelmaker, yesterday said it is raising the prices of steel products for delivery in the fourth quarter by an average of 5.6 percent to reflect soaring raw material costs.
The company said in a statement that it would raise the prices for all products by an average of NT$1,144 (US$37.8) per tonne, with hot-rolled steel items increasing by NT$1,195 per tonne and hot-dipped galvanized steel products climbing by NT$962 per tonne.
Prices for cold-rolled sheets and coils — which are used in the automotive industry — are to increase by NT$1,054 per tonne, and those for steel plates are to be raised by NT$807 per tonne, the statement showed.
Prior to the increase, the steelmaker had lowered prices by an average of 5.28 percent for shipments this quarter in response to fluctuations in major steel markets.
The latest price adjustments came in the wake of sharp increases in global steel prices, partly because of Beijing’s measures to curb excess steel capacity.
US steel prices have surged by more than US$90 per tonne over the past three months and those in China have continued to rally, China Steel said.
Major Chinese steelmakers, including Baoshan Iron & Steel Co (寶鋼) and Wuhan Iron and Steel Corp (武鋼), have announced price hikes of US$97 to US$112 per tonne for hot-rolled items for delivery next month.
“Customer inventory has remained low in China and restocking demand is likely to continue to stimulate steel prices in the fourth quarter,” China Steel vice president Lee Shin-min (李新民) said by telephone.
To meet rising customer demand worldwide, China Steel’s furnaces have been running at full capacity this quarter, Lee said.
Global steel demand is forecast to grow by 2.5 to 3 percent this year, China Steel said, citing statistics from ArcelorMittal SA, one of the world’s largest steel and mining companies.
From January to last month, China Steel’s sales grew 21.35 percent to NT$196.3 billion from the same period last year, it said in a filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange.
The nation’s only integrated steelmaker posted a consolidated pre-tax profit of NT$9.81 billion in the first half of the year, up 25 percent year-on-year, which it attributed to higher steel prices.
First-half revenue totaled NT$167.85 billion, up 22 percent from a year earlier, with shipments of 5.37 million tonnes, China Steel said.
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