Exporting metals from the US: steel, copper, and other metals

The US was the world’s third-largest producer of raw steel (after China and Japan) in 2014, and the sixth-largest producer of pig iron. The industry produced 29 million metric tons of pig iron and 88 million tons of steel. The United States is also a major importer of iron and steel, and iron and steel products.

In 2014, the US produced $113 billion worth of iron and steel; 149,000 people were employed in iron and steel mills, and 69,000 in foundries, during that year. The construction sector is the biggest steel consumer in the United States, and the energy sector accounts for almost 10 percent of total US steel consumption.

Copper also continues to see vigorous production; overall production of copper in the US grew five percent to 1.36 million tons in 2013 compared to the year before

A steady increase in applications for building permits across the US means that more buildings are expected to be built in the near future. This means an increase in demand for metals of all sorts. If you’re in the business of metals, you should want to know more about how to export metals from the US.

Full container load (FCL) or groupage (LCL)

The size of your shipment will determine the ideal transport for you-either a full container load (FCL) or a shared container (LCL). However, taking into account the characteristics of these types of products will in most of the cases, need a FCL (full container load).

Containers come in two sizes-20-foot and 40-foot. Their capacity is 10 standard pallets (39 cubic yards) or 22 standard pallets (nearly 75.5 cubic yards), respectively. In terms of cubic meters the capacity of a 20-foot and of a 40-foot is 30 and 60 CBM, respectively. Translated into cubic feet is: 1,059 cubic feet for a 20-foot container, and twice as much for a 40-foot container.

A full container load will be most appropriate for shipments of five standard pallets or more, as this is half the capacity of a 20-foot container. This is also the choice to make if you wish to keep your merchandise separate from other exporters’goods.

If your shipment is smaller than five standard pallets, the most economical choice will always be groupage, or a less-than-container load (LCL), which involves sharing a container.

Door-to-door service to export steel, copper, and other metals

The magnitude of metals production in the US makes door-to-door shipment service a worthwhile prospect for the exporter. It also allows for a more secure delivery.

At iContainers we offer a complete door-to-door shipment service from the US that includes:

  • Quotes and immediate online reservations of FCL or LCL shipments via our proprietary platform, through which you can obtain a quote using only the zip codes of your starting and destination points.
  • Pick up from the indicated warehouse or address, and transfer to the port of origin.
  • Delivery to the destination port.
  • Management of customs issues in both the ports of origin and the destination (excluding fees and duties).
  • Transport from the destination port to the final warehouse or address indicated.

We also offer a similar service from the US to Taiwan.

Transit times for maritime transport

The destination of your shipment has an effect on its transit time. International transport to the Mediterranean takes between 15 to 25 days; Atlantic Ocean transit takes between 15 to 18 days; the Pacific Ocean requires 30 to 35 days; and transport to Asia take upwards of 8 to 25 days.

Unforeseen circumstances may also cause a delay in shipment, as can matters related to customs clearance. Because of the potential for delays as a result of these issues, we encourage you to allow a window of three months for your export shipment.

Principal destination ports for the export of steel,copper,and other metals

Ports Of China:

  • Port of Shanghai
    The Shanghai International Port Group manages this port, the busiest commercial port in the world; in 2014, it handled in excess of 35 million TEUs of goods.
  • Port of Ningbo
    The port of Ningbo-Zhoushan, as this is officially known, has a combined capacity of 17 million TEUs.
  • Port of Hong Kong
    This deep-water port, managed by the Hong Kong Marine Department, deals largely in raw materials, containerized manufactured products, and passengers.
  • Port of Shenzhen
    This deep-water port hosts 39 shipping companies, making it one of China’s most important ports.
  • Port of Qingdao
    Qingdao Port International manages this port, which handles more iron than any other port in the world, and more petroleum than any other port in China.
  • Port of Xiamen
    In 2013, Xiamen handled 191 million tons of cargo, including 8.08 million TEUs of containers.

Ports of Japan:

  • Port of Tokyo
    This port is one of the largest seaports in the Pacific Ocean basin, with an annual traffic capacity of about 4,500,000 TEU’s.
  • Port of Kobe
    In 2011, over four thousand container vessels called here , carrying 93.4 million gross tons and almost two million TEUs of containerized cargo.
  • Port of Osaka
    Osaka’s port handled a total of 85.3 million tons of cargo in 2010, including 35.12 million tons of foreign trade and 50.1 million tons of domestic trade.

Ports of the United Kingdom:

  • Port of Belfast
    Belfast Harbour handled more than 25 million tons of goods in 2014; in 2013, turnover exceeded $78 million USD.
  • London
    The Port of London, governed by the Port of London Authority, was the second-largest port in the United Kingdom in 2012 in terms of tonnage handled, at 48 million tons.
  • Manchester
    The Peel Ports Manchester Ship Canal has 12 terminals and is 36 miles long.

Ports of Germany:

  • Ports of Bremen
    These ports serve both Bremen and Bremerhaven, and are managed by Bremenports GmbH & Co. KG.
  • Port of Hamburg
    This port features almost 300 berths along more than 26 miles of quay walls for seagoing vessels, four state-of-the-art container terminals, and around 50 facilities that specialize in handling project shipments and bulk cargoes.

Ports of South Korea:

  • Port of Busan
    This is South Korea’s primary port, and, as of 2013, the world’s fifth-largest container port.

Ports of the Netherlands:

  • Port of Rotterdam
    The port of Rotterdam handles nearly 550 million tons of goods annually, and is run by the Port Rotterdam Authority.