The main share of imports falls on semi-finished products – 78.7% of the total volume of deliveries

In January-March 2024, the European Union reduced imports of mining and metals products from Russia by 18.4% compared to the same period in 2023, to 1.11 million tons. This is evidenced by Eurostat data.

The cost of imports of Russian mining and metals products during this period decreased by 11.9% compared to January-March 2023 – to €583.3 million.

Semi-finished products accounted for the bulk of imports – 78.7% of total imports. In 3 months, the EU imported 874.1 thousand tons of the relevant products from Russia, up 4.2% y/y. Belgium accounted for the bulk of imports of semi-finished products – 351.38 thousand tons (+2.2% y/y).

Iron ore supplies from Russia to the EU amounted to 9.36 kt, down 95.3% y/y. The entire volume of raw materials was shipped to Slovakia. Imports of ferroalloys amounted to 22.42 thousand tons (+63.8% y/y), pig iron – 198.75 thousand tons (-34.3% y/y), and scrap metal – 6.38 thousand tons (-21.3% y/y).

In January-March, the main consumers of these Russian iron and steel products were:

  • pig iron – Italy – 137.8 thousand tons (-44.4% y/y);
  • ferroalloys – the Netherlands – 16.34 thousand tons (+73.1% y/y);
  • scrap – Lithuania – 5.8 thousand tons (-17.8% y/y).

In March 2023, the EU increased imports of iron and steel products from Russia by 58.4% m/m and 11.4% y/y – to 534 thousand tons. Import costs increased by 63.9% m/m and 28.6% y/y – to €291.5 million.

Despite the sanctions imposed on Russia, the Russian mining and metallurgical complex continues to make significant profits from exporting products to the European Union. Although the figures have significantly decreased compared to 2023, deliveries are still high.

In 2023, the EU reduced its imports of iron and steel products from Russia by 39.5% compared to 2022, to 4.8 million tons. Import costs decreased by 38.5% y/y – to €2.4 billion. Semi-finished products accounted for the bulk of imports, accounting for 69.4% of total supplies.

As GMK Center reported earlier, in the 12th package, the EU extended quotas on Russian slabs for another four years. The total quota for imports of this product from October 2024 to September 2028 is set at 8.5 million tons with a more detailed breakdown by period. The previous sanctions on slab imports were imposed in October 2022, as part of the 8th sanctions package. At that time, it was decided that it could last until the end of September 2024 within the established quotas, and that imports would cease on October 1, 2024. However, the 12th sanctions package actually eased the previously imposed restrictions.