China sets new records in crude steel production

China is now producing more crude steel than the rest of the world combined. The latest figures released by the World Steel Association show that for the second consecutive month, China’s steel production was greater than all other steel-producing nations put together.

With total output being quoted as 69.4 million tonnes – clearly beating the rest-of-the-world total of 65.5 million tonnes. Despite the awesome two-month total – China’s steel production actually fell from March 2016, when steel production figures reached their highest ever one-month total of 70.7 million tonnes.

The World Steel Association represents approximately 85% of global steel production, including over 150 steel producers.

When compared to last year, Chinese crude steel output has risen by 0.5% thanks to a sharp increase in infrastructure and residential property investment over the past three months, catching markets off guard with the pace and ferocity of its increased steel production.

The increased investment has seen increases in steel prices and source minerals, including iron ore and coking coal.

The World Steel Association also released crude steel production figures over the same period for the following steel-producing nations:

  • Japan (+1.2% to 8.5mt)
  • United States (+2.5% to 6.6mt)
  • South Korea (-1.3% to 5.7mt)
  • Russia (-0.4% to 5.9mt)
  • Brazil (-20.6% to 2.3mt)

While the global sector is currently operating at around 70% of maximum capacity, the recent surge in demand in China, and the subsequent record steel production has increased profitability for a number of Chinese mills that have not experienced such production levels since 2009.

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