Flat rolled steel

The costs of Ukrainian consumers on the import of flat rolled products decreased by 22.7% m/m

In November 2023, Ukraine reduced imports of flat products by 21.5% compared to the previous month – to 74.74 thousand tons. Import costs in November decreased by 22.7% m/m – to $78.1 million. This is evidenced by the data of the State Customs Service.

Compared to November 2022, in November 2023, Ukraine increased its expenditures on flat products imports by 2.5%. Import volumes increased by 22%.

In January-November 2023, Ukraine consumed 831.06 thousand tons of imported flat products worth $95.15 million. The cost of importing foreign products increased by 52.2% year-on-year, while the volume of supplies increased by 2.02 times.

In January-November 2023, Ukraine imported the most coated flat products with a width of 600 mm and more (HS 7210) – 407.04 thousand tons for $481.3 million. In November, imports of such products decreased by 25.8% m/m – to 32.08 thousand tons, and purchase costs amounted to $35.39 million (-26.9% m/m).

The company also imported 283.91 thousand tons of uncoated hot-rolled flat products with a width of 600 mm or more (HS 7208) for $246.72 million, and in November – 28.38 thousand tons (-20% m/m) for $22.55 million (-22.2% m/m).

Cold-rolled flat products made of uncoated carbon steel with a width of 600 mm or more (HS 7209) were among the top three types of flat products imported to Ukraine in January-November 2023, with 69.2 thousand tons worth $61.2 million. In November, shipments of such products to Ukraine fell by 7.7% m/m compared to the previous month – to 8.97 thousand tons, and in monetary terms by 4.9% m/m – to $7.37 million.

The largest suppliers of coated flat products with a width of 600 mm and more in January-October 2023 were China, Turkiye and Poland – 23.8%, 24.2% and 16.4% in monetary terms, respectively. Turkiye (44.5%), Slovakia (17.6%) and Romania (13.7%) shipped more than 70% of hot-rolled uncoated flat products with a width of 600 mm and more. Turkiye was the main supplier of uncoated flat products in January-November 2023 (61.9%).

The increase in imports is due to the destruction of Mariupol steel mills that specialized in flat products. In addition, there is the impact of a low comparison base – in the first half of last year, economic activity was low due to the hostilities. Consequently, imports were not at the top of the agenda.

Imports of flat products are expected to grow in the long term, especially during the post-war recovery period. Imports will be the main source of supply to meet domestic demand. In the short term, imports are expected to stabilize at a certain level, given the existing logistical constraints in the war.

As GMK Center reported earlier, in 2022, Ukraine reduced imports of flat rolled steel by 32.8% compared to 2021 – to 472.01 thousand tons. Import costs for the year decreased by 24.1% y/y – to $698.83 million. The largest suppliers of products were Turkiye, Poland, Slovakia and China.