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Hyundai Steel- BHP coal deal to boost dry bulk market

Seoul: Shippers operating routes from Australia to Korea are likely to benefit from Hyundai Steel's recently signed contract to purchase 1.6m tonnes of coking coal annually from BHP Billiton over the next five years. The steel would be used in Hyundai's 5.84 trillion won ($5.6bn) blast furnace steel project, set to start operations in 2010, Reuters reports. The project is expected to boost output from the country's second-largest steelmaker by 60%.

"We have almost finished coal deals with major suppliers and will confirm the supply schedule for more than 90% of our requirements in the third quarter," Hyundai said in a statement. It added that BHP would begin supplying the coal from April 2009 and the deal would conclude in March 2014. The steel producer has already reached similar deals with Canada's EVCC and Australia's Rio Tinto and Wesfarmers.  [22/08/08]

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