9 Sep 2009 13:42

China's average daily crude steel output hits high in August - CISA

Shanghai. September 9. INTERFAX-CHINA - China's average daily crude steel output reached a high of 1.67 million tons in August, the China Iron and Steel Association (CISA) reported on Sept. 9.

China's crude steel output stood at 51.65 million tons in August, up 1.91 percent from the 50.68 million tons recorded in July, according to the CISA.

"It is no surprise that China's crude steel output in August reached such a level, as downstream enterprises including steel traders usually order steel products from Chinese steel mills a month in advance, during which time domestic steel product prices were still in a strong rising trend. This encouraged downstream enterprises to buy more, and in turn domestic steel mills to produce more," Hu Yanping, an analyst from Umetal, told Interfax.

"I expect China's crude steel output to fall in September because domestic steel product stockpiles grew while prices slid in August. Some small-sized Chinese steel mills have already scaled back production since late August," Hu said.

However, Hu added that the expected drop in production will not be very significant, as most domestic steel mills will maintain normal production because they can still operate profitably at current steel product prices.

In Shanghai, the price of cold-rolled sheet with a thickness of 0.5 millimeters stood at RMB 5,100 ($746.79) per ton on Sept. 8, according to the latest figures released by Mysteel Information.