Steel prices to go up in 2008
Brussels, November 19, 2007
ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steelmaker, said on Monday it would raise prices for flat steel products in North America and Europe to reflect material and energy cost increases in 2008.
US prices were below prevailing global market levels, ArcelorMittal said in a statement, adding low inventories, falling steel imports and relatively robust demand for high quality steels should underpin a realignment.
ArcelorMittal said it had already pushed through price rises for strip mill products in the fourth quarter of this year of an average $20 per tonne and announced a further increase of $40 for deliveries from January 2008.
In the European Union, ArcelorMittal would maintain 2007 prices during the first quarter of 2008 and apply price rises from the second quarter, reflecting raw material cost increases.
The company said the European steel market remained positive after two years of exceptional demand despite the expected slowdown in economic growth, although inventories were high and the euro/dollar was impacting its industrial customers.
'We are convinced that strong demand in China and very expensive freight rates will help to rebalance the European inventory situation within short term and create an excellent basis for further positive developments during the year 2008,' said Christophe Cornier, chief executive of Flat Carbon Europe within ArcelorMittal. - Reuters