CCTV.com - CNTV English - CCTV News

Baltic index hits fresh low, China slowdown bites

07-13-2010 14:40 BJT

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks shipping rates for dry commodities, has fallen to its lowest level in over 14 months. It's a sign that weak Chinese demand has put the brakes on cargo activities.

The index gauges the cost of shipping commodities, including iron ore, cement, grain, coal and fertilizer. It fell 3.25 percent to 1-thousand 8-hundred and 40 points - its lowest level since May 1st last year.

Experts say a combination of slower iron ore activity, weaker coal imports into China, easing port congestion and the end of the South American grain export season, have weighed on freight rates in recent weeks.

Liu Bin, Director of World Economy Research Inst. of Dalian Martime University said "If China steps up its iron ore imports, then the Baltic Index is likely to rise. But if China slows down on iron ore imports, then the gauge will drop."

Figures show that China's iron ore import has maintained a downward trend for three consecutive months. In June, China imported over 470 million tons of iron ore, a drop of around 15 percent compared with May.

Many small-scale Chinese steel makers halted their iron ore imports months ago. With at least six months' supply of iron ore stockpiled at many ports in China, experts say there won't be large-scale iron ore imports in the near future.

Fluctuation of the Baltic Index in the next six months will largely depend on China's market demand. Some experts warn the plunge of the sea freight index could trigger another wave of pessimism towards the world economic recovery.

Editor:Xiong Qu |Source: CCTV.com

Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program