German steel federation says rolled steel demand to rise in 2017

8 November 2016

Germany's steel federation expects demand for rolled steel, one of the industry's main products, to rise by 1-2 percent next year, compared with an expected 1 percent increase this year, it said on Monday.

In the January-August period, orders for rolled steel had risen an average 5 percent, boosted by demand from the construction and automotive industries, the federation said, but added that the sector remained under pressure.

"The economic situation for Germany's steel groups continues to be serious," federation president Hans Juergen Kerkhoff said.European steel producers, including Arcelor-Mittal, ThyssenKrupp and Salzgitter, are seeing weakening emerging markets, lackluster demand at home as well as pressure on prices due to cheap Chinese imports.

Kerkhoff said the European Union's steel imports from China had declined in the first eight months of the year, but were still twice the level of 2013.Germany's steel federation confirmed a forecast for crude steel output of 42.5 million tonnes in 2016, slightly lower than the 42.7 million reached last year.