British Steel imposes biggest ever instant price hike


Stunned constructional steelwork contractors have been hit with the highest ever price hike from British Steel of £250 per tonne on steel sections.

Notices of the extraordinary rise were issued yesterday by British Steel blaming the war between Russia and Ukraine.

The steel producer said the ongoing crisis was creating an extraordinary level of volatility in commodity and energy prices, as well as a significant disruption to international trade flows.

It told firms that it would only be releasing capacity for booking in the first two weeks of April, for production up to 16 April.

After this date prices could rise again depending on market conditions.

A steelwork contractor director said: “We experienced an unprecedented increase over short periods last year, but this is absolutely crippling.

“Not only have we seen phenomenal increases on PI insurance, electricity has shot up and fuel is now constantly on the rise.

“Every day we are going back to clients with updates on the current market, which is not going down well.”

Furthermore, steel plate for bridges which hit £1,400 a tonne just days ago, has jumped again with a quote for 25mm thick product returned at £1,900 a tonne.

Another steelwork boss told the Enquirer: “Tier 1 contractors and end clients have been very good during Covid but I can see contractors and clients patience wearing thin now.

“The market may be buoyant as of today but there are bound to be some ramifications as forward ordering is a real problem with no pricing past two weeks now.

“With the average lead-in for steel at over 18 weeks, the big question is what are clients going to do.

“Try and lock a fixed price. But who in their right mind would take that on? Try and hold the supply chain and watch it fail…its tricky times ahead.”

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