Iron ore

During the month, mining companies of Ukraine shipped 1.51 million tons of iron ore to foreign consumers

In March 2023, Ukrainian mining companies increased the export of iron ore by 24.7% compared to February 2023 – up to 1.51 million tons. In monetary terms, the export of iron ore increased by 33.2% m/m for the month – up to $167.32 million. This is evidenced by State Customs Service’s data.

In comparison with March 2022, in March 2023 export revenue decreased by 41.6%. Shipments of iron ore in natural terms decreased by 24.6%.

During January-March 2023, domestic mining companies shipped 3.66 million tons of iron ore for export, which is 61.8% less than in the same period of 2022. Revenue from the export of iron ore for the first quarter also decreased by 61.8%.

In January-March 2023, the Czech Republic consumed the most Ukrainian iron ore – 27.2%. In the second place is Slovakia – 26.55%, and in the third – Poland, 24.06%. At the same time, before the start of the war in Ukraine, the main consumer of Ukrainian iron ore was China, but due to the blockade of Ukrainian ports, the delivery of raw materials to the People’s Republic of China became uncompetitive.

Export of iron ore from Ukraine in 2023

After the invasion of Russia on the territory of Ukraine, domestic steel companies reduced the export of products to a minimum due to the blockade of sea ports. Steelmakers are looking for ways to ship their products through the railway infrastructure, but due to the influx of cargo, Ukrzaliznytsia and border crossings are unable to cope. In addition, this method of cargo delivery is unprofitable due to the two-fold increase in costs.

In addition, at the end of 2022, the Russian Federation began shelling Ukraine’s energy infrastructure. The country’s industry lost the possibility of normal operation, because the power system generated significantly less electricity than was needed. Thus, steelmakers suspended work or significantly reduced production.

At the beginning of 2023, the situation stabilized, steel plants began to restore suspended capacities and increase production, but in order to return to pre-war levels, the unblocking of seaports is required.

As GMK Center reported earlier, in 2022 Ukraine reduced the export of ferrous metals by 45.9% compared to 2021 – to 23.98 million tons. In monetary terms, the indicator fell by 57.8% y/y – to $2.91 billion.

The major iron ore producers in Ukraine include: Ingulets GOK, Kryvyi Rih Iron Ore Plant, Poltava Mining, Northern GOK, Central GOK, Southern GOK, ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih, Sukha Balka GOK and Zaporizhzhia Iron Ore Plant.