Turkey’s 1Q steel capacity utilisation plummets

Turkish steelmaking capacity utilisation dropped dramatically to 54pc in the first quarter, compared to 70pc in the same period of 2022, according to Turkish steel producers association TCUD.

The decrease was mainly as a result of the earthquakes that hit southern Turkey in early February, which saw producer Isdemir, several rerollers and longs mills stop operations, said Veysel Yayan, secretary general of TCUD at the EUROMETAL and YISAD steel conference this week. Capacity utilisation has been on the decline since last year, with Turkish steel producers uncompetitive in export markets. Crude steel production in January-March was 7.4mn t, down by 22pc on the year.

Capacity utilisation and output will likely continue to be low in April, with Isdemir only this week announcing it has reached pre-earthquake levels.

But steel consumption is dropping this year in Turkey too, down by 7.7pc to 5.5mn t in January-February, TCUD said. Finished steel consumption of flat products fell by 21pc on the year in the first two months to 2.7mn t. The import share of flat products consumed increased to 52pc, up from 49pc on the same time last year, amid a 28pc drop in Turkish flats production.

By Lora Stoyanova