BIG MILLS BENEFIT
Big Chinese mills are able to ship in cheaper seaborne ore direct to their coastal steelmaking operations, selling to customers nearby or shipping steel overseas.
The iron ore price fall also encouraged large mills - those with an annual output of more than 10 million tonnes - to buy more from the spot market, winning benefits once garnered mainly by more flexible private mills.
Despite the scrapping of tax rebates for exports containing boron that had helped boost sales, Chinese exports rose 41 percent in the first quarter, increasing concerns from rival producers around the world.
South Korea's POSCO, the world's sixth-biggest steelmaker, said on Tuesday it expected growing pressure from exports from China and Russia, which would hurt prices.
The European Union is imposing anti-dumping duties on imports of cold-rolled flat stainless steel from China and Taiwan. India's trade ministry has also recommended anti-dumping duties against China, Malaysia and South Korea for some industrial grade steel imports.