Steel production slumped worldwide in 2015


Global steel output fell last year, the first time this has happened since 2009, according to figures from the World Steel Association released this week.

The report from the WSA states production was down in every region besides Oceania.

The USA’s production was down 10.5 per cent to 78.9 million tonnes, Japan down 5 per cent to 105 million tonnes, and the EU down 1.8 per cent to 166.2 million tonnes.  

A standout was India, which managed to up its production 2.6 per cent to 89.6 million tonnes.

Reuters notes that world leader China, which accounts for nearly half of global output of crude steel, cut its annual output for the first time in three decades. This fell 2.3 per cent to 803.8 million million tonnes.

"Many mills including (in) China are pulling production offline in an attempt to support prices — and it is working," Chris Houlden, research manager at consultancy CRU, told Reuters.

"However, any reversal of production cutbacks in response to price rises will again place steel producers' margins under extreme pressure."

In April last year, a leading Australian economist (and former ambassador to China) Ross Garnaut tipped China’s steelmaking output to fall 25 per cent to 2030, reaching around 600 million tonnes.

To see the crude steel output data for 2015 from the WSA, click here.