China’s daily crude steel output fell to 2.210mn mt in late-March, down by 0.16pc from mid-March amid tight pollution curbs to reduce heavy smog in major cities. Key steel producers in Tangshan, Hebei province reduced output to comply with production cuts demanded by local authorities.
Compared to a year ago, crude steel production in late-March rose by 20.98pc, according to CISA, which compiles production data from around 90 statistically significant steel producers across China. Production level in year over year comparison is elevated due to a lower base last year due to the impact of COVID-19. A healthy demand outlook and production cuts are supporting domestic steel prices.
|China’s average daily output in late-Mar (mn mt)|
While daily steel products output in late-March rose to 2.219mn mt, up by 6.91pc from mid-March and up by 19.73pc from a year ago. Pig iron production fell to 1.911mn mt, down by 0.11pc from the prior 10-day period and up by 13.59pc from the prior year.
Key steelmakers cumulative crude steel production in March rose to 68.671mn mt at an average daily crude steel output of 2.215mn mt, down by 2.01pc from February, while up by 21.44pc from the prior March. Steel products output was 66.018mn mt at a rate of 2.129mn mt, down by 2.08pc from the prior month and up by 20.59pc from the prior March.
Steel inventories at key producers in late-March fell to 14.706mn mt, down by 16pc or 2.80mn mt from late-March. Inventories are down by 10.38pc or 1.7mn mt from the end of February and up by 3.085mn mt or 26.55pc from the beginning of the year.