LOS ANGELES Steel beam imports for February appear likely to surpass Januarys totals and are matching the pace set during the same month last year, as South Korea and two other countries are in line to dominate this months arrivals.
Import permit applications for standard and wide-flange beams totaled 15,194 tonnes compared with 17,782 tonnes for all of January, according to data from the U.S. Commerce Departments Enforcement and Compliance division. In February 2013, total imports were 28,154 tonnes.
South Korea led the way, with February applications for 6,044 tonnes of wide-flange beams, or 47.3 percent of the total applications of 12,781 tonnes submitted so far this month. Luxembourg was next with applications for 3,854 tonnes, predominantly for wide-flange beams, followed by Mexico, with applications for 2,910 tonnes of wide-flange and standard beams.
Most Korean beams arrive on the West Coast, while the role played by Mexican beams in the U.S. market is most prominent in the Gulf, market sources noted. Import applications from some countriesnamely Russia and Spainthat last year represented significant arrivals during certain months have been negligible so far this year, they also noted.