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The percentage growth was lower than the group’s forecast of 2% published in early November last year.
Inda members purchased 4.29 million tonnes of flat steel products last year, up by 5.2% compared with the 4.08 million tonnes in 2011.
In December alone, flat steel sales declined by 3.8% year-on-year, to 312,500 tonnes, of which 172,500 tonnes were hot rolled steel and 56,400 tonnes were cold rolled steel.
On a monthly basis, these sales were down by 18.8%, from 384,800 tonnes.
Distributors’ purchases totalled 323,100 tonnes of flat steel goods in December, against 317,700 tonnes a year earlier.
Compared to November, December’s sales fell by 15.3%.
Inda expects both sales and purchases of flat steel products to increase by 15% month-on-month in January, it said.
For 2013 overall, it believes sales will grow by 6% in an annual comparison.
Sales by Brazilian flat steel distributors and service centres came to 4.35 million tonnes in 2012, a small increase of 1.5% compared with 2011, local association Inda said on Thursday January 24.