Global – Almost 10 million tonnes was shaved off global crude steel production in January this year as the total of 127.724 million tonnes for the 66 countries reporting to the World Steel Association (WSA) fell 7.1% short of the 137.518 million tonnes recorded in the opening month of 2015.
Overall capacity utilisation was 66% in January this year, which is 5.8 percentage points lower than in the opening month of 2015 but nevertheless an improvement over December last year.
All regions of the world confirmed lower production levels year on year, with Turkey (+0.8%) and Ukraine (+3.6%) emerging as the only major steel producers to post increases. The world’s largest steel producer China saw production slide an estimated 7.8% to 63.214 million tonnes while EU and US output dropped, respectively, 7.6% to 13.428 million tonnes and 8.8% to 6.618 million tonnes. Again compared to January 2015, smaller production declines were registered by Japan (-2.8% to 8.772 million tonnes) and India (-1.2% to 7.418 million tonnes).
In other regions of the world, crude steel output in South America tumbled 14.6% year on year to 3.251 million tonnes in January while the decline was even steeper in Africa (-14.9% to 1.142 million tonnes). Making the same comparison, production fell 11.3% in the Middle East and 6.3% in Oceania, according to the WSA.