Turkish producers increased billet exports by 33pc to 1.32mn mt, while decreasing imports by 40.3pc to 1.62mn mt, in 2019 compared to the year before.
Billet exports rose because it was more profitable for Turkish mills to sell billets instead of rebar. Moreover, the demand and prices for semis were better. Morocco, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia were the main recipients of Turkey’s billet exports as illustrated in the table below. (Interestingly, Saudi Arabia didn’t import billets from Turkey in 2018.)
Turkey’s main billet export destinations in 2019 (thousand mt)
In lieu of importing billets in 2019, Turkish companies opted to produce their own from scrap. Russia and Ukraine, two main suppliers, decreased shipments to Turkey by 31pc to 1mn mt and by 44.5pc to 388,000mt, respectively.