The World Steel Association released its Short Range Outlook for 2019 and 2020. Global steel demand will grow by 3.9% to 1,775.0 million tonne in 2019 and will grow by another 1.7% in 2020, reaching 1,805.7 million tonne.
In 2019 worldsteel demand forecasts in China will grow by 7.8% to reach 900.1 million tonne and the rest of the world is expected to record 0.2% growth to 874.9 million tonne. In 2020, Chinese steel demand is expected to grow by 1.0%, whereas steel demand in the rest of the world will grow by 2.5%, driven by 4.1% growth in the emerging and developing economies excluding China.
This shows worldsteel demand forecasts will continue to grow in 2019, more than expected in these challenging times, mainly due to China. In the rest of the world, steel demand slowed in 2019 as uncertainty, trade tensions and geopolitical issues weighed on investment and trade. Manufacturing, particularly the auto industry, has performed poorly contracting in many countries, however in construction, despite some slowing, a positive momentum has been maintained.
Chinese steel demand showing high growth in 2019 owing to a strong real estate sector. In the first seven months of 2019 China’s real estate market reported the strongest performance over the same period for the last five years. Conversely, China’s manufacturing sector is experiencing a significant slump due to the slowing economy and the effect of trade tensions.
Developing economies (excluding China) present a mixed picture, but high growth is expected in Asia – Growth of steel demand in the emerging economies excluding China is expected to slow down to 0.4% in 2019 due to contractions in Turkey, MENA and Latin America. But the growth is expected to rebound to 4.1% in 2020 due to infrastructure investments, especially in Asia.
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