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ArcelorMittal ups steel consumption forecast to 2-3% for 2018

London — Based on the ongoing positive economic outlook ArcelorMittal (AM) reviewed its forecast of the apparent steel consumption growth for 2018 to 2-3% from 1.5-2.5%, the company said in its Outlook and Guidance statement on Wednesday.

In China, overall demand is expected to now grow by between 1-2% in 2018 "as real estate demand continues to surprise on the upside and ongoing robust machinery and automotive demand, offset in part by a slowdown in infrastructure," AM commented.

Overall, World ex-China ASC is still expected to grow by approximately 3-4% in 2018.

NAFTA and Europe are seen as the steel demand growth leaders owing to strong machinery and construction sectors. Both regions should see steel consumption grow by 2-3% this year, AM predicted.

A rebound in auto sales and production in Russia should support 2-3% steel consumption growth in the CIS segment.

In Brazil, AM lowered its apparent steel use to 5.5-6.5% from 6.5-7.5% to reflect the impacts of the nationwide truck strike and more cautious sentiment ahead of the elections.

--Wojtek Laskowski, wojtek.laskowski@spglobal.com

--Edited by Alisdair Bowles, alisdair.bowles@spglobal.com