Devastation caused by two major earthquakes in Turkey is having a major impact on steel production and trading.
Turkey is the world’s biggest importer of ferrous scrap and the port of Iskenderun has been closed by the authorities as all resources in the region are being put into coping with the disaster in which thousands of people have died. It is reported that equipment from the port such as cranes have been diverted to the grim task of searching collapsed buildings and restoring other infrastructure.
Steel mills in the affected areas have stopped production with supplies disrupted and reports of pipelines and other energy infrastructure failing. However Argus reports that ‘with no Turkish steel mill in the region or steel terminal severely damaged, scrap shipments are currently not expected to be cancelled’.
It adds that Iskenderun steel mills have accounted for around 18% of total scrap imports to Turkey since April last year.
Kallanish adds that Iskenderun is largely used by steel makers for containerised steel sales rather than scrap imports. The mills’ own ports, which do import scrap, are said to be undamaged.
A source at an Iskenderun mill told Fastmarkets: ‘We are in a state of force majeure. Turkey has already issued a fourth-level state alert and declared a state of emergency in 10 provinces that will continue for three months’.
Steel trade in other parts of the country is also reported to have slowed.