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WSA lowers its steel demand forecasts

Global – Steel consumption growth in 2014 and 2015 is likely to be lower than previously thought owing to ‘a weaker-than-expected performance in the emerging and developing economies’, the World Steel Association (WSA) has concluded in its latest short-range outlook.

The organisation believes global apparent steel use will increase by 2% to 1.562 billion tonnes in 2014 and by a further 2% next year to 1.594 billion tonnes – significantly below its growth predictions published in April this year of, respectively, 3.1% and 3.3%.

′The positive momentum in global steel demand seen in the second half of 2013 abated in 2014,′ acknowledges the chairman of the WSA′s economics committee Hans Jürgen Kerkhoff.

Apparent steel use growth in China is expected to slow to just 1% in 2014 to give a total of 748.3 million tonnes, followed by 0.8% to 754.3 million tonnes next year. India′s steel demand, meanwhile, is expected to climb 3.4% to 76.2 million tonnes in 2014, with ′structural reforms and improving confidence′ supporting a further 6% growth in 2015.

Demand increases of 6.7% to 102.2 million tonnes this year and of 1.9% in 2015 are foreseen for the USA whereas Central and South America are expected to see a decline of 2.4% to 48 million tonnes in 2014 prior to an increase of 3.4% in 2015. A steel demand upturn of 4% to 145.9 million tonnes is envisaged for the EU this year, followed by a further 2.9% improvement in 2015.

Apparent steel use in the CIS region is now expected to slide 3.8% this year to 56.9 million tonnes owing to the crisis in Ukraine. And political instability in the Middle East and North Africa region is also forecast to impact steel demand, although growth of 3.3% to 67.6 million tonnes is still anticipated for 2014.


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