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Defying trade tensions, Chinese buyers snap up Indian steel.


Date: 29-08-2020
Subject: Defying trade tensions, Chinese buyers snap up Indian steel
NEW DELHI/BEIJING: India’s steel exports more than doubled between April and July to hit their highest level in at least six years, boosted by a surge of Chinese buying in defiance of tensions between Beijing and New Delhi. 

Traders said reduced prices had driven the purchases as sellers sought to get rid of a surplus generated by the impact of COVID-19 on domestic demand and generate much-needed income. 

It was unclear whether the sales broke any trade rules, but the China Iron and Steel Association said in a statement it was monitoring them. 

Leading steel companies Tata Steel ltd and JSW Steel Ltd were among Indian companies that sold a total of 4.64 million tonnes of finished and semi-finished steel products on the world market between April and July. 

That compared with 1.93 million tonnes shipped in the same period a year earlier, government data analysed by Reuters showed. 

Of the 4.64 million tonnes, Vietnam and China bought 1.37 and 1.3 million tonnes of steel, respectively. The Chinese purchases are by far the largest since data was first collated in the current form beginning with the fiscal year April 2015-March 2016. 

Neither Tata, JSW nor India’s ministries of steel and commerce responded to emails seeking comment. 

Vietnam has been a regular buyer of Indian steel, but China’s emergence as a leading buyer, replacing New Delhi’s traditional markets, such as Italy and Belgium, is more surprising. 

An already uneasy relationship between New Delhi and Beijing, became severely strained after violent border clashes in June, when 20 Indian soldiers were killed at the disputed Himalayan border. 

New Delhi afterwards tightened rules to restrict Chinese investment in India and initiated measures to curb its trade with Beijing. 

Source:-timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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