European steel demand is expected to increase by nearly 2% in 2018maresos.com
Eurofer said on Friday the region’s steel demand is forecasted to increase in 2018 in most steel-consuming sectors, while warnings of an increased import threat.
Accordingly, steel consumption, excluding the impact of inventory changes, is expected to increase by 1.9% in 28 European Union (EU) countries this year, unchanged from the previous year, with stable demand from factories and buildings.
Despite this, Eurofer noted that consumption growth would fall to 1.4% in 2019.
In addition, the association said the risk of export activity comes from the euro appreciation, but they want to focus more on imports.
Imports of steel into the EU fell by about 1% last year as trade defense measures aimed at anti-dumping and subsidies, as well as rising steel prices in China, caused export activity to decline.
Figures from Eurofer said last year that China’s steel exports to the EU had fallen by 41%, Russia by 32% and Ukraine by 31%.
Imports of steel from India, however, have increased by nearly 100%, from Indonesia more than 100% and from Turkey by 64% last year.
Eurofer noted that the distances caused by trade remedies were quickly offset by other countries.
“We are an easy target for global exporters when they can not sell their products domestically,” said Jeroen Vermij, Eurofer’s chief economist.
Eurofer and its members are currently awaiting US President Donald Trump’s decision on the “Section 232” investigation regarding steel imports that threaten national security.
Despite measures to reduce overproduction in China, Eurofer said it could make steel exports back to Europe.
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