The steel market in the EU is growing steadily, but faces problems of a high share of imports and growing trade barriers, said Axel Eggert, director general of the European Steel Association.
“Growth will stabilize in EU sales markets in line with expectations,” said Axel Eggert, EUROFER CEO, in a release at the end of last week. “However, the various problems facing this sector will affect us in the coming months. Trade tensions can clearly upset the balance of the market, as well as a slowdown in demand in other sectors of the economy. ”
According to EUROFER, steel consumption in the EU in the second quarter increased by 4.4 percent year-on-year.
“Healthy levels of real steel consumption combined with equity capital in the steel distribution chain led to this increase,” says the EUROFER report.
However, domestic supplies grew more slowly than steel imports into the EU.
Domestic shipments grew by 3.7 percent year-over-year, while imports from third countries jumped 9.8 percent. The share of imports of imported metal in the EU rose from 23.2 percent in the first quarter to 25 percent in the second quarter.
“The ongoing, marked increase in imports in the second quarter seems to confirm previous concerns that exporters from third countries are pushing additional volumes to the EU market in anticipation of protective measures and buyers’ willingness to take certain speculative risks, ”the report says.
It is expected that steel consumption in the EU will grow by 2.2 percent in 2018 and 1.1 percent in 2019.
According to EUROFER, in 2018, in the European Union, production is expected to grow by 3.5 percent in 2018 and by 1.8 percent in 2019.