Global demand for steel rising

The International Iron and Steel Institute (IISI) (www.worldsteel.org) forecasts global steel consumption to rise from 1.121 million metric tons in 2006 to 1.198 million metric tons in 2007, an increase of 6.8 percent. Projections for 2008 show a similar increase.

Brazil, Russia, India and China accounted for about 41 percent of global steel demand in 2006 with an expected increase of 12.8 percent in 2007 and 11.1 percent for 2008. Overall, 77 percent of the increase in global steel consumption in 2007 and 71 percent in 2008 will occur in those four countries.

IISI says China apparent steel use is expected to grow by 111.4 percent in 2007 and 11.5 percent in 2008, accounting for 35 percent of the world’s total consumption. Forecasts for apparent steel use in India show an increase of 13.7 percent in 2007 and 11.8 percent in 2008 as compared to consumption in 2006.

Russian steel consumption is forecast to increase by 25 percent for 2007 and 9.5 percent for 2008 compared to 2006 with main consumers being the energy and construction sectors. Consumption in Brazil is expected to rise by 15.7 percent for 2007 and 5.1 percent for 2008 compared to 2006.

Growth in European Union steel consumption is forecast to be 4 percent in 2007 and 1.4 percent in 2008. Steel consumption in the NAFTA region is forecast at negative 4.9 percent in 2007 rising to 4.0 percent in 2008.

. John Surma, chairman of the International Iron and Steel Institute, said “Although global economic risks have increased, the IISI forecast assumes that the recent credit market volatility will not move the US economy into recession. We are pleased to note that North Africa, South Africa and the Middle East are emerging as strong growth regions as higher energy and raw material prices associated with growth in China, as well as other developing nations, increase income and boost investments in these regions."

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