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The country produced 2.13 million tpd of crude steel during the second 10 days of July, up 2.3% from the 2.083 million tpd of output in early July, according to estimates released by China Iron & Steel Assn.

Output of Cisa members, which are mainly medium-sized and large steel mills, also saw a 1.6% uptick from early July to 1.72 million tpd.

The domestic steel market has been making gains in the last two months, with hot rolled coil prices in eastern China gaining 240 yuan ($39) per tonne from May 31 to 3,620-3,640 yuan ($586-589) per tonne on July 26, according to Steel First’s price archive.

Market participants expect crude steel production in late July to increase further, which would increase pressure on the steel market.