JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Global iron-ore use was expected to increase from 1.92-billion tons in 2011, to 2-billion tons in 2012, and 2.08 billion tons in 2013, a new report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Investment (Unctad) found.
In its Iron-Ore Market 2011 – 2013 report, released in June, Unctad attributed the increase to an unchanging relationship between iron-ore demand and crude steel production.
The report also expected tight conditions in the iron-ore market over the next few years, but predicted that the current high prices would start to fall during 2013, as supply adapts to increased demand on the back of 796-million tons of new production capacity introduced between 2012 and 2014.
Africa and Asia would account for 14% and 12% of these projects, respectively. Australia would add 28% capacity, while Europe would account for 20%. North America and Latin America held 10% and 15% of the projects.
Meanwhile, the report stated that developing countries, which increased their exports by 104.8% over the past ten years, accounted for 49.5% the total international iron-ore trade during 2011, which reached a record 1.115-billion tons.
Japan’s imports of iron-ore fell by 4.4% to 128.4-million tons, while Korea’s rose by 15.3% to 64.9-million tons. European imports also increased, reaching 156.4-million tons - 13.7% of world imports.