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Japan's August steel exports dip 1% on year to 3.15 mil mt

Tokyo — Japan's steel exports edged down 0.9% year on year to 3.15 million mt in August, but were up 3.9% from July, Japan Iron & Steel Federation data released Friday showed.

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A JISF official said exports were largely stable on a year-on-year basis as steel producers have been kept busy meeting domestic supply in recent months and had typically little supply left over for export.

A fall in ordinary carbon steel exports in August was balanced by a rise in special steel exports, as special steel demand from the auto sector in Asia has been strong, the official added.

Ordinary carbon steel exports totaled 2.03 million mt in August, down 4.2% on year but up 6.5% from July, and special steel exports 700,193 mt, up 12.4% on year and up 4.3% on month, the data showed.

Japan's steel exports to Thailand totaled 515,832 mt in August, up 9.3% on year and up 0.4% from July, to China 473,987 mt, up 7.5% on year and up 6.6% on month, to South Korea 435,152 mt, down 16.6% on year and up 5.5% on month, and to the US 113,663 mt, down 38.5% on year and down 0.7% from July.

The JISF official attributed the decline in exports to the US to both strong demand from Asian countries absorbing supply and measures taken by the US after Section 232 investigations.

--Yoko Manabe, yoko.manabe@spglobal.com

--Edited by Wendy Wells, wendy.wells@spglobal.com