Brazilian iron ore exports to China push up freight rates

Capesize freight rates rose to their highest yet this year as a resurgence in the Chinese steel industry drove up Brazilian exports of iron ore due for delivery to China next month, Argus Media reports.

The compiler of commodities data says rates for freight on Capesize ships bound from the eastern Chinese port of Qingdao from the southeastern Brazilian port of Tubarão rose to US$19.65 per tonne last week, over twice the sum two weeks before.

The report says steel output has been gradually growing in China, depleting stocks of iron ore there, and so reinvigorating demand for imports from Brazil.

The biggest miner of iron ore in the world, Vale SA of Brazil, still expects to produce between 310 million tonnes and 330 million tonnes of iron ore this year, having produced 302 million tonnes last year, Argus Media says.