TOKYO Japans rolled aluminum output totaled 1.97 million tonnes in 2012, falling 0.5 percent from 2011 and reaching its lowest level in three years, according to the Japan Aluminium Association.
Output of sheet products dropped for a second straight year, falling 2.3 percent to 1.16 million tonnes.
However, extrusion product output rose 2.3 percent to 811,926 tonnes in the same period, marking three straight years of gains and the highest level of output since 1996.
The Tokyo-based association said that it is optimistic that Japanese demand will improve in 2013 on better prospects from the global automotive industry and more focus on reconstruction work at home.
The organization also said that the countrys planned consumption tax hike in 2014 is expected to fuel demand for housing and other goods in 2013.
A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Metal Bulletin.