The Sea/analytics July Report
This month the Sea/analytics team are back with their round up of the latest news in the shipping industry. Find out more about decreased Iron Ore imports from China, how global seaborne volumes of coal continue to rise, and the impact in global exports as countries search for grain.
The decrease in China’s Iron Ore imports
Frequent lockdowns due to the CCP’s zero-Covid policy, curbs on property market speculation and limitations on carbon emissions have negatively impacted steel output in China. This has in turn has led to lower demand for its raw material, Iron Ore. Based on the data from the Sea/analytics commodities dashboard, Chinese imports of Iron Ore in H1’2022 were down 5.7% compared to the same period last year. It is interesting to note that although Sino-Oz relationships remain sour on the coal market front, 2022 witnessed an increase in exports of iron ore from the land down under.
King Coal continues to rise
According to the Sea/analytics commodities dashboard, global seaborne volumes for King Coal totaled 358Mt Q2’2022 – the highest ever since 2019. Increased demand from Indian power utilities coupled with rejuvenated interest from Europe’s biggest Russian gas buyers have been the primary reasons for this uptrend. The North-West European port hub – ARA, has been experiencing an increase in congestion of dry bulk vessels with a growing number of coal-laden ships from South Africa’s Richards Bay Coal Terminal. Moreover, India imported 29Mt of coal in June, of which 60% of the imports originated from Indonesia.
The decrease in seaborne grain trade flows
Reduced exports from Brazil and negligible exports from Ukraine have led to decreased seaborne grains trade flows – about 12% lower in Q2’2022 compared to the average of the same period from the start of 2018. As Ukraine can’t export its grain due to the Russian blockade of its Black Sea ports, Romania’s biggest port, Constantza, has offered some respite as it has facilitated a few shipments for the war-torn nation since the start of March. Importers such as Egypt, which are heavily dependent on Ukrainian wheat, have had to look for other sources to meet the shortfall at home. Countries such as USA, Romania and France have emerged as saviors.
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