The country’s iron ore exports surged by about 87.89 per cent in September to 6.25 million tonnes on account of an increase in offtake from Chinese steel mills.

Iron ore exports in September 2008 stood at 33.28 million tonnes, according to the provisional data from the Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI).

“The increase is on account of robust demand for Indian iron ore from Chinese steel mills. Also, the mills are yet to conclude supply-contract with Australian mining firms and thus are buying Indian iron ore from the spot market,” FIMI Secretary General R K Sharma said.

Improvement in demand for Indian iron ore has also pushed up prices of the raw material in the spot market by USD 5-7 a tonne, he said. Iron ore prices are hovering at USD 76-79 a tonne in the domestic market at present.

For the half-year ended September 30, domestic exports of the raw material increased by 13.15 per cent to 450.33 million tonnes as against 397.99 million tonnes in the year-ago period.

Sharma anticipates the improving trend, in terms of demand and prices of the domestic iron ore, to continue in the coming months. “Demand from China seems to be robust in the coming months,” he added.

India exported 106 million tonnes of iron ore in the last fiscal, out of which about 91 million was shipped to China alone.

Keywords: iron oresteel millsFIMI

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