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Global steel production is declining

Световното производство на стомана намалява
China's crude steel production fell 3.8 percent in November from the previous month, extending its fifth straight monthly decline, official data showed on Friday.

The world's biggest steelmaker produced 76.1 million tonnes of steel last month, down from 79.09 million tonnes in October, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed. November volume compares with 74.54 million tonnes from the same month in 2022.

Average daily crude steel output last month was about 2.54 million tonnes, the lowest level since December 2022, up from 2.55 million tonnes in October, according to Reuters data-based data.

The average utilization factor at blast furnace-based foundries, which account for about 90 percent of the country's total steel production, fell 3.1 percent month-on-month to 88.61 percent, data from consultancy Mysteel showed.

Steel production was also hit further by more frequent and widespread production curbs imposed on factories in northern China in response to heavy pollution, analysts said.

However, earnings in electric arc furnace (EAF)-based steelmaking improved last month, leading to a jump in utilization rates at less polluting foundries from 67% at the end of October to 86.5% at the end on November, data from the consulting company Fubao show.

Profit among foundries in east China's Jiangsu province, many of which are EAF-based, averaged 222 yuan a tonne last month, compared with 10 yuan a tonne in October, according to Fubao data.

Total steel production in December could fall further, analysts say, as cold weather disrupts activity in the construction sector and plants often close during the month.

Production in the first 11 months of this year rose 1.5% year-on-year to 952.14 million tons.

Annual steel production in the world's second-largest economy fell in both 2021 and 2022 after Beijing imposed an output cap to curb carbon emissions.

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