German steel production recovery remains hesitant

In spite of the overall increase in output versus the first period of lockdown in 2020, crude steel production at German mills went down for the second successive month. In July, it came to 3 million tonnes, after 3.4mt in June and 3.7mt in May, according to steel federation WV Stahl figures.

This short-term trend is only partly explained by the summer slowdown. In the comparable year 2019, the dip from June to July was less steep, from 3.4mt to 3.2mt, Kallanish observes. One big factor this year will be the reline of thyssenkrupp’s blast furnace No 1, which takes out a good 200,000 t/month of output.

In the year-on-year comparison with 2020, July production went up by 25%. Since the start of the year, production has totalled 23.6mt, an increase of 19% year-on-year. On an annualised basis for 2021, this would result in 40.5mt and thus remain below the pre-crisis year 2018 level of 42.4mt, WV Stahl notes.

Christian Koehl Germany