China’s March crude steel output on seasonal demand increase


China’s crude steel output rose to a record high of 70.65 million tonnes in March, as steel mills in the world’s top producer hiked production due to a rally in steel prices, data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed.

Data showed steel production was up 2.9 percent from a year ago, but total output in the first quarter was down 3.2 percent at 192.01 million tonnes. Mills increased production last month in response to restocking by steel users, a move that has kicked up domestic prices by 34 percent.

Analysts feel a slowing economy and overcapacity would eventually catch up later in the year and hit the steel sector again.

China’s economy grew 6.7 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, its slowest pace in seven years. It accounts for about half of global steel production and has said it aims to cut between 100 million and 150 million tonnes of crude steel capacity in five years.


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