Record World Steel Output in March Lifts Quarterly Growth to Highest Since 4q13
Record production in China and India, combined with an acceleration in output growth in the rest of the world, meant global crude steel production for the 67 countries reporting to the World Steel Association rose by 4.6% year-on-year to an all-time high of 145.0 Mt in March. This contributed to a 5.7% increase in world steel production in the 1q17 to 410.5 Mt, the fastest quarterly growth since the 4q13.
At 72.0 Mt, annual growth in Chinese steel output slowed to 1.8% in March. By contrast, expansion in Indian and South Korean output remained robust, increasing by 8.2% and 6.4% to 9.0 Mt and 6.1 Mt, respectively. Japanese steel production increased by 1.8% to 8.9 Mt, meaning India overtook Japan to become the world’s second largest steel producer for the first time.
After contracting in February, EU steel output increased by 6.7% last month to 15.0 Mt. US steel production also returned to growth, expanding by 3.4% to 7.0 Mt.