Turkey has increased import duties by up to eight percentage points on coated and uncoated strip mill products with effect from January 1, an industry website reported.
The move is seen as benefiting local producers, as well as exporting countries with which Turkey has a free trade agreement.
For hot rolled coil the import duty is now 13 per cent, up from the previous five per cent; CRC goes up from six to 14 per cent; pre-painted is 15 per cent, up from the previous 12 per cent; and for hot-dip galvanised the duty rises to 15 per cent from 14 per cent. The HRC import duty for re-rollers is five per cent, up from the previous three per cent.
Turkish producers and traders think the changes will be to the advantage of Erdemir and other local producers. Chairman of Kayseri Metal Centre (KMC), a Turkish steel service centre and cold roller, thinks Erdemir will be the star of 2009 in Turkish flats market, according to Steel Business Briefing.
Turkish market players also told Steel Business Briefing that countries such as Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco, which have free trade agreements with Turkey, will increase their share of the Turkish import market.
European mills are not expected to gain because, Turkish sources say, their prices are uncompetitive and European supply is not sufficient for Turkey which imports about seven million tonnes of strip products annually. Russia and Ukraine are among the largest suppliers.
Traders who have cargoes on the way to Turkey are expected to suffer losses in the short term, sources say.