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India’s steel imports from China have reached a six-year high in the first two months of the fiscal year starting in April, according to provisional government data. During April and May, China became the second-largest steel exporter to India, selling 0.2 million metric tons of steel, a 62% increase compared to the same period last year. China’s steel imports accounted for a quarter of India’s overall finished steel imports during this period.

India imported a total of 0.9 million metric tons of finished steel in April and May, the highest since 2021, showing a 27% increase from the previous year. Most of the imports from China were cold-rolled coil or sheets, which constituted a significant portion of India’s overall finished steel imports, accounting for a 30% share.

Analysts predict that China’s steel exports will reach the highest level since 2016, as the weakening yuan and competitive prices allow the country to offload surplus metal due to weak domestic demand. In response to this surge in imports, India’s federal steel ministry is considering imposing a countervailing duty on steel imports from China.

During the same period, South Korea was the top exporter of finished steel to India, accounting for 38% of India’s overall imports by shipping 0.4 million metric tons. However, despite the increase in imports, India remained a net exporter of finished steel in April and May, selling 1.6 million metric tons to countries like Italy, Spain, Belgium, Nepal, and the United Kingdom.

Additionally, India’s crude steel production in April and May reached 22.4 million metric tons, a 6% increase compared to the previous year. The consumption of finished steel also saw growth, reaching 20.3 million metric tons, an 8% increase from the previous year and the highest level in six years.

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