The blockade by Russia of Ukraine’s sea ports and Ukraine's severely depressed current demand for steel has left the nation depending effectively on only one market -- the EU -- so lifting these barriers is without doubt a big aid for struggling Ukrainian steelmakers.
And 4 million mt/year hot- and cold-rolled coil and sheet producer Zaporizhstal, 49.99% owned by Metinvest, seems to be in a stronger position to make the most of the scrapped duties and quotas. Since its restart 1.5 months ago it has already exceeded 50% of its full capacity.
Metinvest's fully owned billet and long rolled steel producer, Kamet Steel in Kamianske, in the Dnipropetrovsk region, is another one to benefit right away; in Q1, it increased output to 607,000 mt, with a good part of this shipped as billet for further processing to Bulgarian sections and bar mill Promet, also part of Metinvest. Billet exports are not quota-regulated, but removing quotas from Kamet’s rolls should help maximize their sales.
The US suspended the Section 232 25% tariffs May 9 on steel imports from Ukraine for one year, amounting to partial relief because of a few product-specific duties staying in place.