World stainless steel melt shop production rose 10.6% year on year in 2021 to 56.3 million mt, according to figures released March 14 by International Stainless Steel Forum.
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Output was up in all regions monitored by the ISSF, with Asia, outside of China and South Korea, showing the largest climb of 21.2% year on year to 7.8 million mt. However, this made up just 13.8% of the overall total.
Production in China rose 1.6% year on year to 30.6 million mt in 2021, 54.4% of the total global output.
Double-digit year-on-year increases were also seen in Europe, up 13.6% to 7.2 million mt, and the US, up 10.4% to 2.4 million mt.
Output in the "others" category -- comprising Brazil, Russia, South Africa, South Korea and Indonesia -- also increased 42% year on year to 8.3 million mt in 2021.
Q4 output down 2.9% on year
Global melt shop production in the fourth quarter of 2021 was down 2.9% year on year, but 1.2% higher on the quarter to 13.7 million mt.
Chinese output for the quarter dropped 12.5% year on year to 7.2 million mt, although this edged up 0.3% from the third quarter.
Q4 production in the US also fell 5.3% year on year and 2.5% on the quarter to 538,000 mt. Production in the rest of Asia and Europe increased 10.1% and 2.8% year on year, respectively, to 2 million mt and 1.8 million mt.
Quarterly production in the other regions was up 23.5% on the year, but down 0.2% from Q3 to 2.2 million mt.