Japan’s steel demand set to rise, but outlook cloudy

Jun 29, 2012 | 12:37 PM | None

Tags  japan, steel, Meti

TOKYO — The outlook for Japanese steelmakers is clouded, with positive signs in some areas partially offset by an expected fall in demand from the domestic auto sector and export markets.

While a modest rise is forecast in steel demand from domestic and export markets in the third quarter, according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (Meti), steelmakers face concerns about a slowdown in domestic manufacturing, the effects of the debt crisis in Europe and the continued strength of Japan’s currency.

"We have to watch carefully the situation of domestic automobile sales after the end of the eco-car subsidy, which will be finished by the middle of the summer. After the previous eco-car subsidy program in 2010, domestic sales decreased by 26 percent," a senior Meti official said.....

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