BEIJING, July 5 -- China's major steel mills may reduce their dependence on foreign imports and shift their eye to domestic productions, as the global iron ore price remaining hike, the Xinhua News Agency reported.
The Angang Steel Co Ltd and Bengang Steel Plates Co Ltd, the nation's leading steel makers in Northeast Liaoning Province, used to be 80% self-reliant on their own iron ore supply. The ratio was the highest among domestic steel makers.
However, the rapid development of the steel makers requires more than what the local resources could supply. Currently, about 40% of the two company's raw materials are imported from abroad, while the import prices for iron ore have almost tripled over the past five years.
"So we are mulling a massive plan of tripling iron ore production over six years," said Gao Lie, chairman of the board of Bengang.
China's iron ore reserves are low grade ore that brings with it high development costs, while imported iron ore is much cheaper in processing with its high quality, said Wang Guoqing, an analyst with the Lange Steel Information Center.
"Therefore the domestic ore developers should be more innovative in technology research and management to lower the costs", Wang added.