The biggest drop in stainless steel production was recorded in Asia (excluding China and South Korea) – by 14.6% y/y.
In January-June 2023, the world production of stainless steel decreased by 1.7% compared to the same period in 2022 – to 28.44 million tons. This is evidenced by non-profit organization International Stainless Steel Forum’s data.
During this period, Europe, in particular Ukraine, reduced the production of stainless steel by 13.4% in comparison with January-June 2022 – to 3.14 million tons. The United States reduced the indicator by 13.5% y/y for the first half of the year – to 942 thousand tons.
In Asia, excluding China and South Korea, stainless steel smelting in January-June decreased by 14.6% compared to the same period in 2022 – to 3.32 million tons, while China produced 17.59 million tons of stainless steel in the same period, which is 8.2% more y/y.
Other countries, in particular Brazil, South Africa, Indonesia, South Korea, and the Russian Federation, reduced stainless steel production by 1.7% y/y – to 3.46 million tons.
In Q2 the global output of stainless steel amounted to 14.76 million tons, which is 7.8% more compared to the previous quarter. Europe produced 1.49 million tons of products (-8.8% y/y), the USA – 465 thousand tons (-2.7%), China – 9.31 million tons (+12.6%), Asia (excluding China and South Korea) – 1.69 million tons (+3.4%).
Therefore, China is the main driver of the growth of the global output of stainless steel in the first half of the year and the second quarter.
As GMK Center reported earlier, in 2022 the world production of stainless steel fell by 5.2% compared to 2021 – to 55.3 million tons. In 2022, global growth of stainless steel was expected by 4% y/y – to 58.6 million tons.
According to the MEPS forecast, global stainless steel production in 2023 will grow to 60 million tons. Stainless steel producers in China and Indonesia will make a significant contribution to the growth of the indicator.