FOCUS: Higher costs support Turkish chrome ore prices versus South African UG2 amid lower market share

A widening price gap between UG2 chrome ore and Turkish chrome ore in China has emerged since mid-March, when persistently high port stocks and falling domestic ferro-chrome prices weighed on the UG2 market, while the Turkish market has been supported by limited supply, rising costs and good demand, participants said.

Fastmarkets’ chrome ore South Africa UG2 concentrates index basis 42%, cif China was calculated at $150 per tonne on Tuesday April 13, after declining by $30 per tonne (20%) over the past five weeks from $180 per tonne on March 9.
At the same time, Fastmarkets’ assessment for chrome ore Turkish lumpy 40-42%, cfr main Chinese ports has held steady for the past seven weeks since rising to $230-240 per tonne on February 23.
The divergence in prices has led to an $85-per-tonne difference, marking the widest gap between both markets since May 2018.

“The difference had been much higher in the past. It narrowed as the proportion of ore consumed from South Africa increased, and other producers cut their premium,” a Turkish ore producer source said.
Limited supply

The availability of Turkish chrome ore has fallen with the country’s ore production shrinking in recent years, market sources told Fastmarkets....

Published

Jon Stibbs

Siyi Liu

April 20, 2021

09:25 GMT

London, Shanghai