Steel sales by Vietnamese steelmakers increased in Q1 2021, as the government succeeded in controlling the spread of COVID-19. Demand recovered in both, domestic and export markets.
In Q1 2021, steel exports stood at 1.63mn mt, up by 59.5pc from the prior-year quarter, according to customs data. Steel production in Vietnam increased by 33.8pc in the period from last year to 7.66mn mt. Steel sales in the country rose by 34.7pc from the prior year to 6.78mn mt.
In March, steel production in Vietnam totaled 2.96mn mt, growing by 43.7pc from February, according to Vietnam Steel Association (VSA).
The country’s total steel exports totaled 1,106,670mt, increasing by 74pc from 636,710mt compared to the previous month and by32pc from 841,092mt in the same month last year.
Exports to rise in April
In April, exports are likely to increase. Leading HRC makers Formosa and Hoa Phat Steel have announced price hikes of over $100/mt for May-June shipments.
This week a few bookings for re-rolling SAE1006 HRC by Chinese buyers were at $930-940/mt cfr Vietnam. Around 20,000mt of HRC thickness below 2mm were booked at $960/mt cfr Vietnam. Indian sellers offered HRC at $1,000/mt cfr Vietnam.
A gap of over $100-150/mt between HRC offers by large-scale Vietnamese steelmakers and producers from other countries could benefit the former to secure more export orders in April, believe traders.