News Industry mining & metals sector 15 October 2020
Production of rolled products increased in eight months, whereas that of pig iron decreased
In August 2020, Ukrainian steelmaking companies reduced steel production by 5.7% to 1.8 million tons compared to the same period of the previous year, according to the updated statistics of Ukrmetallurgprom.
In August, Ukrainian steelmakers produced:
- 8 million tons of sinter ore (by 2.4% more than in January–August 2019);
- 820 thousand tons of coke (-6.8%);
- 8 million tons of pig iron (-1%);
- 7 million tons of rolled products (6%);
- 70 thousand tons of pipes (0%).
In January–August, steel production fell by 6.6% to 13.7 million tons compared to the same period of the previous year. In eight months, Ukrainian steelmakers produced:
- 3 million tons of sinter ore (+0.8% against 8 months of 2019);
- 46 million tons of coke (-6%);
- 5 million tons of pig iron (-1.2%);
- 3 million tons of rolled products (2%);
- 540 thousand tons of pipes (-26.9%).
Ukrmetallurgprom believes that the main reasons for the decline in production are the lockdown, protectionism policies of the governments of economies that have traditionally been key export markets for Ukrainian steelmakers, a cut in prices and shrinking demand for metal products, and excess steel production capacities around the globe amounting to around 440 million tons annually.
In the opinion of analysts of GMK Center, Ukraine’s steel industry is coping with the crisis caused by the pandemic better than many other global market players. A manifestation of this is the fact that in July, Ukraine managed to win back one position in the top producers ranking. The country currently enjoys pride of 12th place.
If no particularly negative events happen in the markets this fall, it is possible to expect an annual result close to the last year’s level. This could be considered an undoubted success amid an expected 6.4% fall in global steel consumption, according to the World Steel Association, GMK Center analysts say.
As of 11 September 2020, the main operating production facilities included 18 out of 21 blast furnaces, 6 out of 8 open-hearth furnaces, 13 out of 16 BOFs, 5 out of 15 electric-arc furnaces and 16 out of 17 continuous casting machines.
As reported earlier, in 2019, companies of Ukraine’s mining & metals sector decreased steel production by 1.2% to 20.85 million tons, pig iron by 2% to 20.6 million tons, and rolled products by 0.9% to 18.2 million tons against 2018.