Japan’s crude steel output in March increased by 2.2% year on year and by 9.5% from February to 9.08 million mt, data released last week by the Japan Iron and Steel Federation, or JISF showed.
A JISF official said Tuesday that the March production of above 9 million mt is a very high level in recent years. “Both integrated mills and electric furnace mills have kept a high level of production to meet firm domestic demand,” he said.
Of the March total, production by converters was 6.78 million mt, up 1.4% year on year and by 8.6% from February and those by electric furnaces increased by 4.5% year on year and by 12.3% from February to 2.3 million mt.
“Production by electric furnaces recorded 18 consecutive months of year-on-year increase. Both ordinary steel producers for the construction sector and special steel producers for manufacturers had led overall production by electric furnaces higher,” the official said.
Ordinary carbon steel production in March increased by 2.2% year on year and by 9.4% from February to 6.84 million mt and those of special steel increased by 2% on year and by 9.7% on month to 2.25 million mt.
Meanwhile Japan’s crude steel output during April 2017 to March 2018 decreased by 0.3% year on year to 104.84 million mt.
The JISF official explained that the production during the first half of the fiscal year (April-September 2017) had decreased because of facility problems at integrated mills.
“But production from the second half improved and it is expected to continue. We expect steel output in the current fiscal year [April 2018-March 2019] to be higher year on year,” he said.