Iron ore exports fall most in September; down 47 pc at 3 mn tn

Iron ore exports fall most in September; down 47 pc at 3 mn tn

"The decline, biggest this fiscal, is mainly due to the Karnataka ban and the prolonged monsoon season," Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI) Secretary General R K Sharma said.

According to the data compiled by industry body FIMI, the country shipped 5.7 million tonnes of iron ore in the same period last year.

India, the world's third largest iron ore exporter, had produced 218 million tonnes of iron ore in the last fiscal and exported almost half of it. Of the total exports, more than 80 per cent went to China, the world's largest steel producer. Iron ore is a vital steel making raw material.

Karnataka had during the last quarter announced banning exports of iron ore from some of its ports in an attempt to curb illegal mining of the mineral in the state.

On the outlook, Sharma said the demand has improved and so the prices.
"As of now, there is demand in China. But there is problem in the supply chain due to Karnataka ban and also logistics issue in the country's eastern sector," he said.
At present prices are hovering around USD 145-150 falling from this year's high of about USD 180 a tonne to USD 80 a tonne, he said.

For six months ended September 30, 2010, iron ore exports fell by 8.43 per cent to 40.2 million tonnes against the year-ago period, the FIMI data said.At present, Iron ore lumps attract an export duty of 15 percent while a 5 per cent tax is levied on shipments of iron ore fines.