August 4, 2017 / 5:45 AM / 18 days ago

Japan's Itochu sees iron ore, coking coal prices falling later in 2017 -CFO

TOKYO, Aug 4 (Reuters) - Japanese trading house Itochu Corp's Chief Financial Officer (CFO) said on Friday the firm is maintaining its earlier assumption that natural resource prices such as iron ore and coking coal will weaken later this year, despite a recent rally.

Higher prices of iron ore and coking coal boosted the company's first-quarter earnings, but prices of the steel-making ingredients are likely to fall as supply will increase and China's steel output may be capped, said CFO Tsuyoshi Hachimura, speaking at an earnings news conference.

Hachimura also said Itochu wants to slightly increase its interests in oil and gas assets, and fresh energy investment may be made on its own or with Chinese partner CITIC.

Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell

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