Prices for Italian stainless steel scrap rise
Prices for Italian stainless steel scrap rise

22 December 2022 – Prices for stainless steel scrap from Italy continue to rise significantly. Nickel has been turbulent these days and now rumours point to further production cuts in nickel. But are there possibly other reasons behind it than are being spread? And India imposes anti-dumping duties on Chinese stainless steel pipes. Outlook for a possible EU Expiry Review on stainless steel tubes from China?

Prices for Italian stainless steel scrap are rising

Italian stainless steel scrap is in short supply and, according to market information, this is not expected to change for January 2023. In addition, prices for the raw material mix at 304 and 316 have increased significantly. This was already evident from the first publications for the January 2023 alloy surcharges.

Where is the scrap price heading?

It is expected that the prices for the tonne of 304 scrap will increase by 6 to 7%. For tonne 316 scrap, the increase could be even more pronounced. Here, the available information for January points to rising prices of 9 to 11%.

Nickel continues to be turbulent

The United States has imposed sanctions on Vladimir Potanin, Russia’s richest tycoon and the president and biggest shareholder of mining giant MMC Norilsk Nickel PJSC.

More nickel production cuts?

Now rumours suggest that Nornickel, one of the world’s largest nickel producers, is talking about possible production cuts in 2023. Allegedly to react to overcapacities in the market. This had already had an impact on the volatile but still rising nickel futures yesterday.

Reaction to overcapacities only pretended?

This rumour that Nornickel is reacting to possible overcapacity could, however, simply be an attempt to divert attention from the extensive export restrictions imposed by Western nations on high-value mining equipment and heavy construction machinery. Even though Nornickel has so far been spared direct sanctions, these export restrictions are likely to hit the group hard. Especially with an outlook for the coming year and no foreseeable end to existing and possible future sanctions against Russia.

Nornickel with serious accidents in 2021

After the two serious water inrushes in 2021 and a devastating fire in a processing plant of the Russian mining giant, a production cut by 10% would also throw the group back to a level that was already significantly below the production results of 2020 in 2021. And according to the group, in 2022 it would probably only just have been able to return to the level of 2020.

INSG had just cut outlook for 2022 by 25%

The International Nickel Study Group had just recently cut its outlook for possible surplus production in 2022 for much-needed nickel by almost 40,000 MT. If Nornickel does indeed cut another 10% in production, for whatever reason, the expected increase in demand in 2023 could again see a global underproduction of nickel.

India imposes anti-dumping duties on Chinese stainless steel

India has recently imposed new anti-dumping duties on imports of stainless steel seamless tubes and pipes from China. The anti-dumping duties are up to $3800 per tonne.

Is the EU Expiry Review for Chinese stainless steel tubes coming?

A possible EU expiry review of the anti-dumping measure on Certain seamless pipes and tubes of stainless originating in China could be next. However, with AD duties of up to 71.9% on seamless stainless steel tubes from China, it is unlikely that the European tube producers will simply let the measure expire.

An EU anti-dumping refund investigation (RF81-01) is currently underway.

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