In January-April, Belgian steelmakers reduced steel production by 10.5% y/y

In April 2023, Belgian steel enterprises reduced steel production by 20.4% compared to the previous month – to 465,000 tons. On an annual basis, steel production in the country decreased by 26.7% in April. This is evidenced by WorldSteel Association’s data.

In January-April 2023, steel production in Belgium amounted to 2.17 million tons, which is 10.5% less than in the same period of 2022.

In 2022, Belgian steelmakers reduced steel production by 0.4% compared to 2021 – to 6.94 million tons. In December 2022, 667,000 tons of steel were produced, which is 13.8% more y/y and by 28.3% m/m.

In general, steel production in the countries of the European Union in April 2023 fell by 11.7% compared to April last year – to 11.1 million tons. In January-April 2023, 44.4 million tons of steel were produced in the EU, which is 10.2% less y/y.

As GMK Center reported earlier, in 2022 European steelmakers reduced steel production by 10.5% compared to 2021 – to 136.7 million tons. In general, global steel output last year fell by 4.3% y/y – to 1.831 billion tons.

During the second half of 2022, European steelmakers massively reduced production capacity amid rising electricity tariffs and unfavorable market conditions. At the same time, the European market was filled with imported steel products, which attracted consumers at lower prices than local ones. According to Fastmarkets estimates, at the end of 2022, about 14-15 million tons of annual steel capacities were stopped in Europe.

At the beginning of 2023, EU steelmakers began restarting idled capacity as apparent steel demand and product prices began to rise and energy costs declined and stabilized. In addition, the industry expects further growth in demand for steel products.