World Steel General Assembly 2017 - Day 1

World Steel General Assembly 2017 - Day 1

Published: 17 Oct 2017 

China’s steel consumption has been drastically underestimated

Worldsteel surprised with its 12.4% increase for Chinese steel demand this year, due to the removal of induction furnace capacity. Much like shadow banking, China’s true steel capacity situation has always been hard to accurately estimate given the size and fragmentation of the industry. Using local, poor quality scrap rather than iron ore meant the demand could not be worked out by calculating Fe units. How long had China harbored ‘ghost’ capacity roughly equivalent to annual US steel production?

Emerging nations start to dominate leading consumers table

Next year sees Vietnam take its place for the first time among worldsteel’s Top 10 steel consuming countries, with 27 million metric tons. Along with the Philippines – which could one day join its Southeast Asian compatriot on the list – Vietnam is the major driver of steel demand in the region. Mexico is one place ahead of Vietnam in 9th position, with worldsteel predicting steel demand of 27.6 million mt. Back in 2007, Italy and Spain were both on the list but Germany is the sole European representative in 2018.

Top 10 countries: Steel demand 2018

(Source: worldsteel)Steel demand (million mt)

China 765.7

US 97.3

India 92.1

Japan 64.5

South Korea 56.4

Germany 41.6

Russia 40.5

Turkey 35.5

Mexico 27.6

Vietnam 27.0