NEW YORK China again spearheaded a rise in global crude steel production, which rose 1.9 percent to 131.7 million tonnes in June from 129.2 million tonnes in the same month last year.
Chinas crude steel production for the month totaled 64.7 million tonnes, up 4.6 percent from 61.8 million tonnes in June 2012, according to the latest figures from the World Steel Association (WorldSteel). This boosted Asian production 3.5 percent to 87.9 million tonnes from nearly 85 million tonnes in the same comparison.
North American production inched up 0.1 percent year on year to 9.79 million tonnes, despite a 0.2-percent drop in U.S. output to 7.22 million tonnes and a 1.1-percent decrease in Canadian production to an estimated 1 million tonnes. Meanwhile, Mexican production increased 2.6 percent to an estimated 1.45 million tonnes in the same comparison.
Production in the European Union fell 3.5 percent year on year to 14.2 million tonnes in June as Germany and Italy, the largest E.U. producers, respectively, logged declines of 2.2 percent and 10.3 percent.
South American production fell 1.5 percent to nearly 3.8 million tonnes compared with June 2012, with Brazils 2.7-percent increase helping to mitigate a 7.7-percent decline in Argentina and a 12.5-percent drop in Venezuela.
Global crude steel production through the first six months of the year reached nearly 789.8 million tonnes, up 2 percent from slightly more than 774 million tonnes in the same period last year.
Chinese production rose 7.4 percent to 389.9 million tonnes from 363 million tonnes in the same comparison, while that in the United States declined 6.4 percent to 43.2 million tonnes from 46.2 million tonnes.