Steel rebar prices rise in Egypt after import tariffs imposed

Reuters , Tuesday 13 Jun 2017

Chinese steel
A labourer works at a cold-rolling mill of the Wuhan Iron & Steel Group on the outskirts of Wuhan, capital of central China's Hubei province August 22, 2006. (Photo: Reuters)

The price of steel rebars used in construction has jumped about 17 percent in Egypt after temporary tariffs on imported rebars from three countries came into effect last week.

The cost of Egyptian rebars has risen to 10,500-10,600 Egyptian pounds ($580-$585) per tonne from 9,000 pounds ($497) last month, Ahmed El-Zainy, the head of building materials at the Cairo Chamber of Commerce, told Reuters.

The import tariffs on steel rebars from China, Turkey and Ukraine were aimed to protect local manufacturers. But the price rise has hit construction projects in the country which produces 6 million to 7 million tonnes of steel rebars a year, analysts say.

The Trade Ministry said last week that the tariffs would remain in place for four months.

"We used to sell for less than cost price before the anti-dumping fees were imposed because imported steel was sold in Egypt at a cheaper price than in its country of origin," a source at a maker of rebars said, asking not to be named.

All inputs in the steel production process are imported and have doubled in price since Egypt's pound was floated, and manufacturers have adjusted prices accordingly, the source said.

Egypt's central bank abandoned its peg of 8.80 pounds to the dollar in November, a move that led to the currency roughly halving in value.

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