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In the first half of 2014, crude steel production pushed up by 4.2% year-on-year to 22.48 million tonnes, and capacity utilisation was around 90%.

“Despite the recent stable upward trend, the steel industry’s recovery remains fragile in the face of high risks and difficult economic conditions,” WV Stahl said.

Detailed figures for May showed a 5.9% year-on-year decrease in the total output of hot rolled steel products to 3.249 million tonnes.

Within that total, flat product output rose by 10.3% year-on-year to 2.122 million tonnes, while long steel output decreased by 1.5% to 1.127 million tonnes.