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WSA: steel demand set to fall again this year

Global – Global steel demand will edge even lower this year after falling 3% in 2015, forecasts the World Steel Association (WSA). However, a decline of 0.8% in 2016 to 1.488 billion tonnes is expected to be partially offset by growth of 0.4% in 2017 to 1.494 billion tonnes, the organisation contends in its latest market outlook.

‘The global steel market is suffering from insufficient investment expenditure and continued weakness in the manufacturing sector,’ says T V Narendran, chairman of the WSA’s economics committee.

However, steel demand growth is anticipated for all major market areas in 2017 – with the notable exception of China where a 4% drop-off in 2016 is thought likely to be followed by a further decline of 3% next year to 626.1 million tonnes – or 15% less than in 2013.

‘We expect that steel demand outside China will continue to grow by 1.8% in 2016 and this growth will accelerate to 3% in 2017,’ Narendan points out.

India’s steel demand is forecast to jump 5.4% in both 2016 and 2017 to reach 88.3 million tonnes. And for the world’s largest steel scrap importer Turkey, the WSA envisages steel demand growth of 3.3% in 2016 and 3.2% in 2017, supported by the government’s focus on pro-growth economic policies and low oil prices.

Steel demand across the five ASEAN countries of Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines is predicted to maintain an annual growth rate of around 6% to 74.6 million tonnes in 2017.

EU steel demand is forecast to grow by 1.4% in 2016 and by a further 1.7% in 2017 while the corresponding growth expectations for the USA are, respectively, 3.2% and 2.7%.

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