Up until the final few months of the year, Pakistan buyers had been market frontrunners on much of the larger LDT tonnage – particularly tankers gas free for man entry only, including the majority of VLCCs.
The import of Chinese billets has been particularly tough on local buyers who are now seeing the existing inventories on their plots undercut by a cheaper (but lower grade) of steel.
However, in a turn of events, Gadani buyers are again looking to lead the market by placing new import duties / taxes on the cheap Chinese steel and they are also limiting the volume of steel collected from yards that is being resold to domestic mills each week, to reduce competition.
2015 is expected to be a watershed year for Pakistan, with pressure on moves towards greater standards in yards (due to upcoming EU legislation) meaning that tankers going to Pakistan may have to be cleaned gas free for hot works, as with India and Bangladesh.
It is hoped that Gadani buyers will embrace such responsibilities and continue to look to lead the industry as they have done for large parts of this year.
Source: steel guru. 31 December 2014