VIETNAM STEEL SCRAP: Market at standstill as Covid-19 case numbers surge

The Vietnamese steel market remained in a state of shutdown during the week ended Friday July 30 due to a worsening of the Covid-19 pandemic situation in the country, which limited interest in imported scrap, sources told Fastmarkets.

Offers for bulk Japanese H2-grade material were heard at $485 per tonne cfr Vietnam, although there was a bid at $480 per tonne cfr Vietnam by a southern Vietnamese steel mill.

Offers for bulk Japanese HS were heard at $570-580 per tonne cfr Vietnam, while offers for bulk Japanese shredded were heard at $555 per tonne cfr Vietnam.

One Vietnamese buyer was bidding $540 per tonne cfr Vietnam for bulk Japanese shredded.

Market sources reported that there had been a transaction for a Hong Kong-origin cargo of H1&H2 (50:50) at $478 per tonne cfr Vietnam late last week, but it was only made known this week.

Hong Kong-origin H1&H2 (50:50) scrap was offered at $481 per tonne cfr Vietnam this week.

Demand for imported scrap was extremely poor, sources said, especially due to the worsening Covid-19 pandemic in the country.

Major Vietnamese cities continued to see increasing number of cases, with outlying cities such as Dong Nai also recording new cases.

The country’s Ministry of Health reported 4,992 cases on Friday, with 4,987 cases in the Ho Chi Minh City area, including 2,740 cases in the city itself, and 1,284 cases in neighboring Binh Duong.

Vietnam has imposed more lockdowns and overnight curfews, as well as stipulating stricter working conditions in steel mills, to slow the spread of the virus.

Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for steel scrap H2, Japan-origin import, cfr Vietnam, was $480-485 per tonne on Friday, widening upward by $5 per tonne from $480 per tonne cfr Vietnam last week.

Offers were heard at $510 per tonne cfr Vietnam for bulk HMS 1&2 (80:20) from Australia and the United States, against bids at $500 per tonne cfr Vietnam.

Market sources estimated prices for deep-sea bulk cargoes of HMS 1&2 (80:20) at $505 per tonne cfr Vietnam. A transaction at $490 per tonne cfr Korea for 60,000 tonnes of Russian A3-grade material this week supported this estimate.

There were also bids at $495 per tonne cfr Vietnam by other Vietnamese steel mills, although no sellers were able to accept such bids.

Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for deep-sea bulk cargoes of steel scrap, HMS 1&2 (80:20), cfr Vietnam, was $505 per tonne on July 30, falling by $5-10 per tonne from $510-515 per tonne a week earlier.

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