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BEIJING: Chinese coking coal and coke futures rose on Wednesday, as recent coronavirus outbreak in the country sparked supply concerns for the steelmaking ingredients.

The highly transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus has been detected in China since late July. The National Health Commission reported 96 new confirmed COVID-19 cases in the mainland for Aug. 3, including 71 locally transmitted infections.

“The coronavirus situation has been developing, which affected the turnover rate of coke and arrivals at mills,” GF Futures wrote in a note. The recent outbreak also delayed efficiency of motor transport for coking coal, it added.

The most traded coking coal futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange, for September delivery, rose 1.1% to 2,287 yuan ($354.01) per tonne as of 0330 GMT. Coke futures increased 2.1% to 2,917 yuan a tonne. Prices for benchmark iron ore futures on the Dalian bourse also gained, edging up 0.1% to 1,063 yuan per tonne. Spot prices of iron ore with 62% iron content for delivery to China, compiled by SteelHome consultancy, was unchanged at $185.5 per tonne on Tuesday.

Construction steel rebar on the Shanghai Futures Exchange, for October delivery, recovered in morning trade, up 4.7% to 5,411 yuan a tonne.

Hot rolled coils, mostly used in the manufacturing sector, rose 1.6% to 5,790 yuan per tonne. Shanghai stainless steel futures fell 1.2% to 18,975 yuan a tonne.

Zimbabwe has banned the export of raw chrome with immediate effect in a bid to support the domestic ferrochrome industry, minister of information Monica Mutsvangwa said on Tuesday.

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