Mitsubishi Chemical Says in Talks With Tata Steel to Supply Coke

Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corp., Japan’s largest producer of the products, said it’s in talks to supply coke to India’s Tata Steel Ltd. after the loss of one of its biggest customers.

Mitsubishi Chemical is seeking to secure customers abroad and in Japan to make up for cuts in shipments to Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp.’s Kokura mill in southern Japan, said Kenta Horie, a spokesman for Mitsubishi Chemical, who confirmed talks with Tata Steel. The Japanese steelmaker, formed from the October merger of Sumitomo Metal Industries Ltd. and Nippon Steel Corp., can source coke internally.

The chemical company imports coal from countries such as Australia and processes it into coke to sell to steelmakers. Sales from carbon products, including coke and carbon fiber, are forecast to fall 15 percent to 230 billion yen ($2.5 billion) in the year ending March 31, according to a Nov. 1 statement.

The Nikkei newspaper reported the talks with Tata Steel earlier today, without saying where it obtained the information.