By Carolina Curiel
TOKYO (Scrap Monster): The latest trade statistics released by the Japanese Ministry of Finance (MoF) indicates that the country’s ferrous scrap exports remained more or less flat during the initial two months of the current year. However, the monthly exports during Feb ’17 were down considerably by 4.4% when compared with the same month a year before.
The MoF data suggests that Japan exported 710,848 tons of ferrous scrap during February 2017. The exports declined by 4.4% when matched with those during February last year. The country’s ferrous scrap export volumes had totaled 743,564 tons during Feb ‘16. Chiba ranked first in Japan’s ferrous scrap exports during the month. The country’s exports through Chiba totaled 102,995 tons, accounting for nearly 15% of total shipments out of the country. The exports through Chiba declined significantly by 9.5% over the previous year. Incidentally, Chiba has been the port to record highest ferrous scrap export volumes since October 2016. In second place was Kawasaki in Kanagawa. The total exports through the port dropped considerably by 26.2% over the previous year to 72,634 tons. In third place was Nagoya in Aichi. The ferrous scrap exports through the port totaled 35,570 tons, higher by 17.4% from the same month a year ago. The other main ports of export were: Tobata (29,956 tons), Tokyo (27,242 tons), Sakai (26,757 tons), Muroran (23,432 tons) and Kinuura (23,240 tons).
The cumulative exports during the initial two-month period of the year totaled 1.354 million tons, more or less flat when matched with the exports during January to February last year. Japan had exported 1.361 million tons of steel scrap during January to February last year. The average monthly exports stood at 677,000 tons during Jan-Feb ’17. The annualized scrap exports by the country in 2017 are estimated at 8.127 million tons.
In terms of scrap exports during Jan-Feb ’17, Chiba ranked first by accounting for 14.2% share of total shipments. A total of 191,747 tonnes of ferrous scrap was shipped through the port during this period. The shipment volumes were down 6.4% over the previous year. Kawasaki stood second with 140,194 tonnes (10.4% share). The shipments through the port plunged by nearly 24% year-on-year. In third place was Kinuura with 5.2% share of total exports. The exports through the port surged higher by over 16.6% year-on-year to total 70,268 tons. The other major ports that accounted for ferrous scrap exports were Nagoya (66,017 tons, 4.9% share), Tokyo (65,494 tons, 4.8% share) and Tobata (64,148 tons, 4.7% share). The top two ports-Chiba and Kawasaki together accounted for nearly 25% of the total ferrous scrap exports by Japan during Jan-Feb ’17.
Meantime, official data released by the Japanese Iron and Steel Industry (JISF) indicates that domestic ferrous scrap consumption by alkaline oxygen convertors totaled 833,000 tonnes, declining significantly by 9.4% over the previous month. The consumption levels had totaled 919,000 tonnes during the first month of the current year. The domestic steel scrap inventory by Japan totaled 2.967 million tons in February this year.