Wednesday 20 March 2019

Global steel demand ‘to rise 1.8pc this year’

DUBAI, April 18, 2018

Global finished steel demand will grow by 1.8 per cent to more than 1.616 billion metric tonnes (mt) in 2018, and increase by another 0.7 per cent to nearly 1.627 billion mt in 2019, the World Steel Association said.

Delivering the Brussels-based organization’s short-range outlook during a media briefing in London, worldsteel’s director General Edwin Basson said the growth expected this year and next is spread fairly evenly.

“For the first time in a number of quarters we now see strong growth in both developing and developed economies,” Basson said. “The exception to the rule is China.”

World production and consumption leader China will see flat demand this year, followed by a 2 per cent decline in 2019. Steel demand for China will be roughly 736.8 million mt this year and 722.1 million mt next year, according to worldsteel.

Basson said after years of continuous steel demand growth, it was expected China would reach a peak and begin to see some decline, as it transitions from an investment-driven to consumption-driven economy.

Africa will likely see the biggest reversal of fortune this year, swinging from a -6.8 per cent demand decline in 2017 to growth of 4.5 per cent this year and another 4.6 per cent next year, when demand will total 36.6 million mt and 38.3 million mt, respectively, according to worldsteel.

Central and South America are likely to realize 6.2 per cent growth this year, to 43.5 million mt, and 4.9 per cent growth, to 45.6 million mt, in 2019 – a significant turnaround from just a few years ago when the region saw a 13.6 per cent decline in 2016.

Similarly, the CIS region is expected to see continued positive growth over the next two years of 2.3 per cent and 1.8 per cent in 2018 and 2019, after realizing a contraction just a few years ago. Its demand will total 54 million mt this year and 55 million mt next year, according to worldsteel.

India, which is expected to realize year-on-year growth of around 5.5 per cent in 2018 and 6 per cent in 2019, when demand will hit 97.5 million mt, could overtake the US for the No 2 spot in terms of global steel demand leaders “in another year or so,” Basson said.

Europe will experience small year-on-year increases in growth, with the European Union 28 countries’ collective demand to rise by 2 per cent this year (to 165.6 million mt) and 0.8 per cent next year (to 166.9 million mt). The NAFTA region should realize a 3 per cent increase in 2018 and another 1.6 per cent rise in 2019, worldsteel said, translating into demand of 145 million and 147.3 million, respectively.

Looking to the future, Basson said worldsteel expects overall global steel demand to rise from its current 1.6 billion mt to around 1.8 billion-1.83 billion mt over the next 20 years. – TradeArabia News Service

Tags: China | World Steel | steel demand |

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