Iron ore

In March, the indicator increased by 14.5% y/y

Chinese mining companies increased iron ore production by 15.3% in January-March 2024 compared to the same period in 2023, to 284.1 million tons. This is evidenced by data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), SteelOrbis reports.

In March 2024, Chinese mining companies increased ore production by 14.5% compared to March 2023.

Iron ore prices declined in March, although there was an upward trend after the recent Chinese holidays amid improved sentiment and higher commodity futures. Steel demand was not as strong as expected, leading to a decline in iron ore consumption. Increased ore production in China’s domestic market also had a negative impact on commodity prices in March.

As GMK Center reported earlier, imports of iron ore by Chinese steelmakers in the first quarter of 2024 increased by 5.5% y/y – to 310.13 million tons. In March, imports increased by 0.5% y/y – to 100.72 million tons.

The figure rose amid increased demand among steelmakers after the holiday season. In addition, the market had predicted an increase in production in March, but demand was much weaker than expected, which, together with high imports, increased stocks in ports and sent raw material prices down.

In March, iron ore stocks in major Chinese ports increased by 5.3% m/m – to 142.1 million tons, the highest level since the end of February 2023, while iron ore prices fell by more than 13%. Imports are expected to grow further in April.