Asian steel output remains firm outside of China

Asian crude steel output fell further in November on the continued cut back in output in China, according to World Steel Association data. Excluding China, output was also down month-on-month but was still growing strongly on-year, Kallanish notes.

Total Asian crude steel output totalled 97.748 million tonnes, down 15.62% year-on-year and 2.6% month-on-month in November. China, the region’s top producer, saw November production of crude steel hit 69.31mt, 3.17% lower m-o-m and slumping 22% on-year. China is seeing a slight rebound in output in December after it completed output reduction targets by the end of November.

Asia excluding China, meanwhile, saw crude steel output drop 1.2% m-o-m to 28.438mt, but this was largely down to the shorter month. Output was still up 5.4% y-o-y. Several countries continue to see stronger output due to the delayed recovery from Covid-19 in 2020 and the steady increase in installed capacity.

Second-largest regional producer India saw crude steel output fall 2.25% from October to 9.825mt. This was up 2.25% from last year. Meanwhile, Japan, the third-largest producer of crude steel, produced roughly 8.04mt, down 2.24% m-o-m but up 10.71% on-year.

South Korea’s steel production in November increased 2.42% m-o-m and 2.72% y-o-y to 5.922mt. Vietnam’s output was up 0.95% m-o-m and 6.72% y-o-y at 1.906mt. November production in Taiwan was 6.78% y-o-y but 3.08% lower on-month at 1.89mt.

January-November steel production across the region was 1.257 billion tonnes, up 1.11% y-o-y. China produced 944.855mt, down 2.84% y-o-y. Output in India increased 19.27% to 107.307mt.

Excluding China, Asia’s combined production was up 15.26% y-o-y across January-November, totalling 312.55mt. With production of 88.397mt, Japan was the third-largest producer of steel in Asia between January-November. This quantity was 16.84% more y-o-y. In South Korea and Vietnam, output over the opening 11 months rose by 5.56% and 20.41% respectively to 61.169mt and 17.929mt. January-November production in Taiwan totalled 21.052mt, up 10.5% y-o-y.

Tomas Gutierrez UK