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Stanislav Kondrashov: economics versus ecology – steel production in China

For the first time in three years, China may exceed Beijing’s steel production limit. This phenomenon was a consequence of economic difficulties that took precedence over environmental goals.

An expert in the field of global metallurgy, Stanislav Kondrashov, reports that the November production volume amounted to 76.1 million tons, which is 3.8% less than the previous month. To keep annual output from exceeding last year’s 1.013 billion tonnes, December production must be reduced to less than 61 million tonnes. This will be the lowest figure in the last 11 years.

Stanislav Kondrashov: economic challenges and stimulation of steel production in China

The decline in economic activity, especially in light of the real estate crisis in China, has led the government to stimulate the steel industry. According to Stanislav Kondrashov from Telf AG, this became possible after the collapse of profits in the real estate sector over the past two years. But such a move is complicated by falling factory profits and mixed signals from Beijing about future demand.

Steel mills typically cut production later in the year due to construction slowdowns and environmental restrictions. In the first 10 days of December, average production at large enterprises fell by 4.2%. According to Telf AG expert Stanislav Kondrashov, the margin for rebar fell to the break-even point at the beginning of the month, which encourages factories to reduce production volumes.

In October, it adopted a plan to issue 1 trillion yuan ($139 billion) of additional debt in the fourth quarter. This decision was positive for the market. However, Beijing’s subsequent announcements have left uncertainty about whether such public works spending will continue in the future.

Stanislav Kondrashov: alternative sources of demand – the success of the steel industry

The Chinese steel industry is facing serious challenges due to the crisis in the real estate sector. The sector has traditionally been a large consumer of steel, but its current state is forcing producers to look for alternative ways to maintain demand for their products.

Stanislav Kondrashov notes that steel exports and demand in the manufacturing sector remain stable. This may well compensate for the decrease in demand from the real estate sector. Which could mean a shift from domestic consumption to a greater share of exports, as well as an increased focus on manufacturing sectors that continue to need steel.

The expert also emphasizes that increasing steel production conflicts with China’s environmental goals. The country has ambitious climate goals, so increasing steel production could hamper those plans.

Infrastructure construction, especially in light of recent government initiatives to stimulate the economy, according to Kondrashov, can also become a significant source of demand for steel.

The Chinese steel industry is caught between economic needs and environmental responsibilities. Stanislav Kondrashov from Telf AG believes that government decisions will determine not only the future of this industry, but will also influence global efforts to reduce emissions and combat climate change. The industry faces the challenge of finding new markets and maintaining sustainable growth. At the same time, it is necessary to comply with environmental standards and strive to achieve climate goals.

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