The World Steel Association Projects 2010 Steel Demand to Return to 2008 Levels

The World Steel Association (worldsteel) forecasts for 2010 confirm my earlier view that steel demand (and production) most likely bottomed this year and some kind of recovery is underway.

Worldsteel’s forecasts indicate that demand for steel in 2010 will return to 2008 levels after contracting in 2009 by 8.6%:

“The World Steel Association (worldsteel) is forecasting that apparent steel use will contract worldwide by -8.6% to 1,104 mmt in 2009 after declining by -1.4% in 2008. This is an improved figure over the spring forecast issued in April 2009 which predicted a decrease of -14.1%. The improvement is largely due to the exceptionally strong growth in steel demand in China. With signs, from the beginning of the second half of 2009, of a recovery across the world now apparent, global steel demand in 2010 is forecast to grow by 9.2% to 1,206 mmt which is a recovery to the level of 2008.”

While Chinese steel demand should account for 48% of the world’s apparent steel use, Worldsteel does not expect Chinese growth rates to lead the way next year (“ArcelorMittal chief surprised at China’s steel demand outlook“). Chinese growth will drop to 5% while regions like the U.S., India, and the EU-27 will experience double-digit rates of increase.

Click here for the details of Worldsteel’s forecasts.

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