India: Imported met coke prices up; lower shipments expected in Oct
Metallurgical (met) coke import prices into India exhibited an uptrend with shipments expected to arrive in the coming week amidst rise in coking coal prices. Japan-origi...
Metallurgical (met) coke import prices into India exhibited an uptrend with shipments expected to arrive in the coming week amidst rise in coking coal prices.
Japan-origin met coke delivered to India continued to move up as prices for the CSR 64% blast furnace (BF) grade inched up 2.43% to $632/tonne (t) in the current week from its previous $617/t, an increase of $15/t w-o-w.
India-delivered Japanese met coke prices have been seeing a gradual increase since the start of Aug'21 owing to rising coking coal prices and cargo shortage along with growing domestic demand.
A month earlier, the BF grade CNF India prices were around $577/t. At present, this is assessed at $632/t. Three months back, it was trading at $458.5/t. The reasons are escalation in coking coal prices, supply tightness and rising demand.
India-delivered Columbian ultra-low phosphorus (ULP) nut coke prices stood firm at $560-570/t, amidst increasing domestic ferro alloy prices and full capacity utilisation of ferro alloy plants.
Rising coking coal prices
FOB prices of Australian coking coal continued to rise on tight supply and healthy demand.
Australian premium low-volatile (PLV) hard coking coal FOB prices are presently assessed at $401/t on FOB basis, an increase of $5/t from the previous $395/t, on strong demand for premium mid-volatile matter cargoes. A trade was concluded on 8 Oct at $404/t FOB Australia for 45,000 t of Australian premium mid vol Goonyella C with early-Dec laycan.
The Chinese coal market is uncertain currently. The flooding in Shanxi province disrupted normal production and transportation, leading to no trading at present. It is rumored that due to halt in steel production owing to bad weather conditions and power outages, met coke inventory might have increased and prices witnessed a downward correction but it cannot be confirmed.
FOB China prices for 64% CSR met coke stood steady at $681/t.
Downward import trend
Met coke import volumes in Sept'21 were down 6.21% (1.62 lakh tonnes) in comparison to 1.73 lakh tonnes in Aug'21, on account of optimum utilisation of domestic coke plants, and efficient domestic sourcing.
However, it is quite early to describe the import trend for Oct'21, although a total quantity of 110,000 tonnes of met coke are expected to reach various Indian ports by the third week of this month, as assessed by CoalMint on 8 Oct'21. Shipments are expected from Poland (70,000 t) and Ukraine (18,000 t).
Simultaneously, 22,000 t of Japan-origin met coke are expected to reach a western port on 18Oct , to be procured by a major steel mill.
India-delivered seaborne met coke prices are expected to stay at elevated levels and not see any correction since global coking coal prices are on an upward trend for quite a few months.
Accordingly, import volumes are expected to be lesser than domestic since Indian met coke is comparatively cheaper.