By Carolina Curiel (ScrapMonster Author)
February 04, 2016 06:19:27 AM
CANBERRA (Scrap Monster): The data released by Australia’s Port Hedland authorities indicates significant drop in shipments during the first month of the current year. The drop in shipments is primarily attributed to the bad weather conditions that prevailed during the month. The port was closed during end-January on account of Cyclone Stan, which in turn has led to disruption of port activities.
The total cargo shipments during January 2016 dropped heavily by more than 10% to 33.78 million metric tons when compared with the previous month. The exports had totaled 37.55 million mt in December last year. The exports dropped considerably when compared with 36.77 million mt exported during January 2015. The Jan ’16 export levels are the lowest since June 2014. The outbound shipments to China dropped to 28.91 million mt when matched with 32.17 million mt in December 2015 and 30.15 million mt during January 2015.
The shipments had reported strong volume growth in Dec ‘15, boosted by initial shipments from Gina Rinehart’s Roy Hill project. According to commodity strategists, the sharp decline in exports during Jan ’16 was quite expected, especially due to peak exports during December and disruption of port activities due to bad weather conditions. The exports from Roy Hill are expected to pick up in the following months.
Port Hedland, a gateway to the ore-rich Pilbara region of Western Australia, handles shipments from BHP Billiton Ltd. and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. The facility is also being used by Rinehart’s Roy Hill.