Steel production across the world declined by 5.3pc to around 1.03bn mt in the first seven months of the year from 1.08bn mt during the same period in 2019, according to the World Steel Association (worldsteel).
Global steel production continued to trend down in July as the industry recovered from the COVID-19 related shutdowns, worldsteel indicated. During the month, global steel production was reported at 152.70mn mt, down by 2.5pc from 156.68mn mt in July 2019. However, it increased by 2.4pc from 149mn mt in June 2020.
In Asia, steel production declined in the first seven months of the year but saw a slight increase in July led by a jump in China’s steel output. Asian countries produced 759.26mn mt of steel in January-July 2020, down by 2pc from 774.89mn mt produced during the same period last year. In July, Asia produced 116.48mn mt of steel, up 2.3pc from 113.83mn mt during the same month last year.
Apart from China, Vietnam saw an increase in production in the seven-month as well as the July period. In the first seven months of the year, Vietnam’s output rose 8.4pc to 13.05mn mt from 12.04mn mt during the same period last year. Vietnam’s steel output in July climbed by 19.8pc to 2.1mn mt from 1.79mn mt in July 2019.
The European Union, on the other hand, saw the steepest decline in steel output in July compared with the same month last year. The combined production of the 28 countries in the European Union declined by 19.2pc in the first seven months of the year to 78.36mn mt from 96.95 mn mt during the same period last year. In July, production in the region dove 24.4pc to 9.82mn mt from 12.98mn mt in July 2019.
Germany, Europe’s largest steel-producing nation, witnessed a 16.9pc decline in January-July 2020, to 19.88 mn mt from 23.93mn mt during the same period last year. In July, Germany’s steel output was short by 24.7pc to 2.42mn mt from 3.21mn mt in the same month last year.
Other European countries, which are not part of the European Union, saw a combined rise in their monthly steel output led by an increase in steel production in Turkey. Steel production in this region, decreased by 4.7pc in January-July 2020 to 21.02mn mt from 22.06 mn mt in the same period last year but rose by 4.8pc in July to 3.31mn mt from 3.16mn mt in July 2019.
In North America, worldsteel reported a production deficit of 18.7pc during the first seven months of the year to 57.62mn mt from 70.89mn mt during the same seven months last year, while monthly steel output in July decreased by 28pc to 7.20mn mt from 10.02mn mt during the same month last year.
North America declines in January-July 2020 were led by a 19.5pc drop in production to 41.64mn mt from 51.73mn mt in the US. The country’s July output also fell by 29.4pc to 5.24mn mt from 7.41mn mt in July 2019. Canada’s steel output in July was estimated to have fallen by 15.4pc during the first seven months to 6.45mn mt from 7.63mn mt during the same period last year, while the country’s July output was 24.5pc lower at around 800,000mt, from 1.06mn mt in the same month last year.