World steel production was 137 million tonnes in March, down 0.5 percent compared to the same month last year, but China’s reported higher production, the World Steel Association (WSA) said, even as Beijing came under severe criticism for exporting steel at cheap prices.
The WSA said world crude steel production was 385.7 Mt in the first three months of 2016, down by 3.6 percent compared to the same period in 2015. Asia produced 263.6 Mt of crude steel, a decrease of 3.1 percent over the first quarter of 2015.
The EU produced 40.9 Mt of crude steel in the first quarter of 2016, down by 7.0 percent compared to the same quarter of 2015. North America’s crude steel production in the first three months of 2016 was 27.5 Mt, a decrease of -1.1 percent compared to the first quarter of 2015, while the C.I.S. produced 25.0 Mt of crude steel, a fall of 0.4 percent, the WSA said in a statement.
China’s crude steel production for March 2016, however, rose 2.9 percent to 70.7 Mt compared to March 2015. Elsewhere in Asia, Japan produced 8.6 Mt of crude steel in March 2016, a down 6.8 percent compared to March 2015. India’s crude steel production was 8.1 Mt last month, up by 3.4 percent on March 2015.
In the EU, Germany produced 3.8 Mt of crude steel in March, down 1.6 percent while, Italy’s production fell 3.5 percent to 2.0 Mt and France produced 21.4 percent less at 1.1 Mt.
In March 2016, Russia produced 6.0 Mt of crude steel, down by 2.0 percent over March last year, while production in Ukraine shot up by 28.1 percent to 2.2.
The US produced 6.7 Mt of crude steel in March 2016, an increase of 4.9 percent compared to March 2015.
The crude steel capacity utilisation ratio of the 66 countries in March 2016 was 70.5 percent, the statement said, 1.3 percentage points lower than March 2015. Compared to February 2016, it is 3.9 percentage points higher.