China's dependence on foreign iron ore approached about 70 percent in 2009, 13 percentage points higher than the previous year, said a Shanghai Securities News report on Friday, citing a government official.
China's climbing demand for iron ore made the nation's imports account for 75 percent of the world's iron ore trade, said Xin Guobin, an official with the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).
Brazilian mining giant Vale requested an 80-90 percent price hike for iron ore deals last week. MIIT spokesman Zhu Hongren said that the 90 percent price hike was unacceptable to any normally operating firm and may lead to losses on both sides.
China saw an overcapacity problem in the steel industry. The nation had 700 million tons of steel production capacity in 2009, while consuming only 530 million tons. Fixed-asset investment in the industry increased 20 percent last year.