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April global steel output drops 13% on year hit by coronavirus pandemic

Highlights

January-April output down 4.2% on year to 580.2 million mt

China production recovering at 7.7% higher than March

EU output still moving lower with 11.8% on month fall

London — Global crude steel production in April fell 13% year on year to 137.1 million metric tons across the 64 countries reporting to the World Steel Association (worldsteel), as the coronavirus pandemic continues to hit the sector.

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The association said many of the month's figures were estimates that could be revised in the following month's production update, due to the ongoing difficulties caused by the pandemic.

The monthly volume was 6.9% lower compared to March's revised figure of 147.3 million mt.

World crude steel production was at 580.2 million mt in the first four months of 2020, down 4.2% year on year.

In Asia, production in April fell 7.5% on the year to 104.5 million mt, which was also down 0.7% from the previous month.

Asia's January-April crude steel production volumes totaled 418.7 million mt, down 2.1% year on year.

China produced 85 million mt of crude steel in April, down 0.2% year on year but 7.7% higher from March. According to worldsteel, China was the only country that saw production climb on a month-on-month basis.

India estimated 3.1 million mt of crude steel production, down 65.2% on the year and lower by 61% from March.

In the EU, estimated April crude steel production fell 22.9% from a year ago to 10.7 million mt, also down 11.8% from the previous month.

In the first four months of 2020, the EU produced 49.4 million mt, 12.5% lower year on year.

The region's largest steel producer, Germany, produced an estimated 3 million mt of crude steel in April, down 10.7% from a year ago and lower by 8.7% from March's revised figures.

Likewise, Italy's production volume in April also dropped 3.7% on the year and 1.2% on the month to 1.35 million mt.

In April, North America's production dropped 28.3% on the year and 25.5% on the month to 7.2 million mt and its output in the January-April period totaled 36.8 million mt, down 9.8% compared to a year ago.

The US produced 5 million mt in April, a 32.5% decline from April 2019 and 29% lower than the previous month.

South America production fell 42.8% on the year to 2.1 million mt in April, which was also 35% lower compared to March. The region produced 12.1 million mt of crude steel in the first four months of the year, down 16% year on year.

Brazil produced 1.8 million mt, down 39% on the year and 32.7% from the previous month.

The CIS region registered an estimated decline of 22.6% on the year to 6.55 million mt, which was also 23.4% lower than March.

Russia's estimated production was 4.7 million mt, down 19.4% from April 2019 and 23.1% lower on the month.

Ukraine produced 1.3 million mt in April, dropping 30.9% on the year and 24.1% on the month.

Turkey's crude steel production in April totaled 2.2 million mt, down 26.3% from a year ago and 27.8% lower than March.

In Africa, production dropped 55.7% on the year to 602,986 mt in April, also 46.8% lower than the previous month, while the Middle East registered a year on year decline of 22% to 2.6 million mt, down 25.5% from March.