Key iron ore producers drive China's record imports
Singapore, 25 October (Argus) — A 13mn t increase in shipments from its three largest suppliers sent China's iron ore imports above the 100mn t level for the first time in September.
Australia and South Africa both shipped record amounts and Brazil shipped its third-highest level. The three combined for 91.98mn t of imports in September, an increase of 12.93mn t from August, according to Chinese customs data.
Australian imports at 65.1mn t eclipsed the previous high of 61mn t in June. South Africa at 5.09mn exceeded its previous high of 4.6mn t in March 2014. Brazil at 21.8mn t was its third-highest monthly total.
China imported a total of 102.83mn t in September, higher by 16pc from 88.66mn t in August and 11pc higher than September 2016. The previous record was 96.3mn t in December 2015.
Brazil's imports during January-September grew the most up by 8pc, or 14.3mn t, to 189.9mn t from the same period in 2016. Australian imports grew the most on an absolute basis, up by 6pc, or 30mn t, to 562mn t from the same period in 2016. South African imports rose by 2pc to 38.4mn t over the same period.
Iran's September volume was the fourth-largest export total at 1.951mn t, up by around a third from August and a year previously. January-September Iranian imports grew by 39pc, or 4.7mn t, to 16.8mn t.
Ukrainian imports fell the most from August, down by 60pc to 651,052t, its lowest since March. Its January-September imports at 10.4mn t are down by 27pc from 14.3mn t in the same period last year.
Indian imports of 1.11mn t in September, up by 25pc on the year, are expected to ramp up this month following the June-September monsoon that curtails exports from coastal state of Goa. India's January-September imports at 24mn t were more than double the 11.6mn t in the same period in 2016.