The dissolution of the cartel has seen prices shoot up in Bangladesh over past week, perhaps to an irrational and somewhat speculative degree, as local levels cooled off towards the end of the week, in conjunction with declining local steel plate prices. Notwithstanding, Chattogram remains the top priced market in the industry and several larger LDT VLOC sales have taken place here to take the total number sold for recycling for the year to 27 of which, GMS has negotiated 18. As prices soar past USD 400/LDT, GMS has seen a marked increase in the number of Ship Owners who are re-introducing their respective candidates for a recycling sale, as charter rates in certain sectors remain comparatively muted and recycling increasingly becomes the more viable option for aging assets again.
Overall, demand and pricing remains healthy in Bangladesh and despite the customary volatility and constantly wavering steel prices, there is little doubt that this will be the market to watch for over the next few months, heading into 2021. The cartel had subdued levels to such an extent that over the second and third quarters of the year, a majority of the market tonnage went either to India, or a rampant Pakistan, but that is all set to change now as it is business as usual in Chattogram once again. Therefore, expect a busy end to the year in the sub-continent recycling destinations, especially as supply picks up and activity ramps into higher gear, following a far more subdued few months post-summer.