14 Jan 2010 11:58

Ukraine boosts iron ore exports 27%, imports soar 43% in 2009

KYIV. Jan 14 (Interfax) - Ukraine raised iron ore exports tentatively 27.1% in 2009 to 28.576 million tonnes as consumption by the country's own steel producers plummeted, Ukrrudprom, the association of Ukrainian mining enterprises, told Interfax.

Iron ore concentrate exports soared 90% to 13.215 million tonnes and pellets were up 10.9% to 9.649 million tonnes, however sinter ore exports fell 21.1% to 5.346 million tonnes.

Ferrexpo plc's Poltava Mining was the biggest pellet exporter. It sells the bulk of its pellets abroad.

Ukrrudprom also said Ukraine still had to import iron ore, boosting overall imports tentatively 43.3% in 2009 to 3.883 million tonnes. Concentrate imports tripled to 3.021 million tonnes while sinter ore imports fell 49.2% to 613,100 tonnes and pellet imports tumbled 54.2% to 227,400 tonnes.

Ukrainian iron ore concentrate production fell 3% to 54.853 million tonnes in 2009. Prepared iron ore output fell 13% to 55.28 million tonnes, including pellets - 20.435 million tonnes (up 0.1%) and sinter ore - 34.845 million tonnes (down 19%); and crude iron ore was down 8% to 65.827 million tonnes.