Italy, the largest export market for Indian steelmakers, imported 0.6 million tonnes, up 26% y-o-y. Spain, the second largest market, imported 0.24 million tonnes, up 87%. Meanwhile, Belgium imported 0.2 Mt, a 32% decrease for the April-July 2024 period.
The most exported products were hot rolled coils and sheets, accounting for 39 per cent of total finished steel exports.
In addition to Europe, the UAE and Nepal are also important export destinations. Exports to the UAE decreased by 23 per cent y-o-y to 0.19 Mt, while shipments to Nepal increased by 30 per cent to 0.22 Mt in the same period.
Finished steel imports totalled Rs 192 billion ($2,336 million) while finished steel exports stood at Rs 215.47 billion ($2,621 million), according to a Steel Ministry report.
The data shows that Vietnam, once one of the largest buyers of Indian steel, has now emerged as a major seller. Imports from Vietnam, which is among the top five sellers, increased by a staggering 860% y-o-y to 0.17 million tonnes. In the same period a year ago, India imported only 17,000 tonnes of steel from Vietnam.
India's other major steel sellers include Korea with 0.69 million tonnes (down 4%), China with 0.6 million tonnes (up 62%) and Japan with 0.26 million tonnes (up 47%).
Notably, China was India's second largest steel supplier with finished steel imports reaching a five-year high in the first four months of the financial year. Steel supplies from China increased 23% y-o-y to 2 million tonnes due to the attractiveness of imports from China, which are $40-60 per tonne cheaper.