China’s iron ore port stocks up on easing jam

Total imported iron ore inventories at the 45 Chinese ports grew for the second week by 635,100 tonnes or 0.6% to 113.7 million tonnes by September 3, as higher iron ore discharges from these ports had been offset by the ease of vessel congestion, according to Mysteel’s latest survey report on September 4.

Over August 28-September 3, the number of vessels queuing at the 45 sampled ports declined notably by 19 to 169, or a low in four weeks, even though new iron ore shipments had arrived at the Chinese water steady over the week, Mysteel noted.

During the period, total iron ore discharges from the surveyed ports rebounded by 148,900 tonnes/day or 4.8% on week to 3.26 million tonnes on Chinese steel mills’ growing demand, which was just 30,700 t/d lower from the over four-year high of 3.29 million t/y on August 13.

“The easing congestion at the Chinese ports have been due to the efforts to accelerate COVID-19 test and better weather condition,” a Shanghai-based analyst said, and the longest waiting period for a vessel at some other ports in East China had shortened to 5-6 days, from 8-9 days, she noted.

The Qingdao port in Shandong of East China, or one of China’s six key ports for imported iron ore, saw its iron ore inventories grew for the second week by another 100,000 tonnes on week to 11.5 million tonnes as of September 3, and the queuing period for an iron ore vessel reduced to five days in the prior week to only two days, or almost back to the normality.

By origin, the Australian iron ore stocks at China’s 45 ports fell for the sixth week by 691,600 tonnes or 1.2% to 56.7 million tonnes by September 3, while the Brazilian ore grew 227,000 tonnes on week, or up for the seventh week, to 30 million tonnes, according to Mysteel’s survey.

By product, imported iron ore fines at the surveyed ports increased by 2.4 million tonnes or 3.6% on week to 69.3 million tonnes by Thursday, but both lumps and concentrates posted on-week decline. Imported iron ore pellet stocks, during the period, remained generally stable, Mysteel’s data showed.

Of all the stocks, traders’ held 56.1 million tonnes, down 77,000 tonnes or merely 0.1% on week, or accounting for 49.3% of the total, according to Mysteel’s data.
Source: My Steel

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