German crude steel output down 2% year-on-year in July

Crude steel production in Germany fell by 2.1% year-on-year in July 2012 to 3.59 million tonnes, according to German steel association WV Stahl.

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Output of flat products showed a drop of 9.6% year-on-year to 2.07 million tonnes, while production of long products fell by 5% compared with July 2011 to 1.11 million tonnes.

An overview of the entire German steel sector showed further drops in orders during the second quarter of 2012, due to the worsening of the eurozone debt crisis.

Total incoming orders for rolled steel products for the period shrank by 12% quarter-on-quarter compared with the first three months of 2011, to 9.08 million tonnes.

“Because of the [economic] uncertainty, investment plans were postponed and traders and stockholders kept stock levels low,” the association said.

Orders from within Germany were down by 12% quarter-on-quarter in the third quarter, while orders from countries within the European Union fell by 18% quarter-on-quarter.

Only orders from countries outside of the European Union rose by 9% quarter-on-quarter, as exports were supported by the weak euro exchange rate.

The association expects orders to remain stable in the near term, but sees no significant improvement unless the wider economy improves.

“A sustainable recovery in steel demand requires the political establishment to establish confidence in the solvability of the eurozone debt crisis,” WV Stahl said.