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Posted on 14 Sep 2023

Overview of Flat Steel Consumption in ASEAN-6 in 2022

Flat steel demand in ASEAN-6 declined 2.3% y-o-y to 38.4 million tonnes in 2022. This was mainly due to the significant decline in flat steel demand in Malaysia and Thailand. Production declined around 1.2 million tonnes to 16.5 million tonnes. Import and export of flat steel registered negative growth rates of 5.3% and 16.1% respectively. 

Indonesia’s flat steel demand registered an increase of a million tonnes to 9.2 million tonnes in 2022. It was the largest growth rate of flat steel demand in the region. This could be a result of a significant growth in automotive sector and other manufacturing sectors in the country. Flat steel production continued to increase and registered 5% growth rate in 2022. Import surged by half a million tonnes to 5.7 million tonnes in the same period. Flat steel export reduced slightly to remain at 4.2 million tonnes. 

Malaysia’s flat steel demand dropped 5.4% y-o-y to 3.5 million tonnes in 2022. Production was not significant; however, the volume surged 36% y-o-y to 187,500 tonnes. This could partially be because the resumption of hot rolled coil production in 2022. Both import and export dropped around 6-7% y-o-y to 4 million tonnes and 761,870 tonnes respectively. Flat steel demand negative growth rate in 2022 was not in line with the positive growth rate of manufacturing sectors. This could be because the expanding manufacturing sectors are mostly non-steel using industries. 

Philippines’s flat steel demand continued to expand and the volume increased 10% y-o-y to 3.8 million tonnes in 2022. There is no production of flat steel in the country and all demand is served totally by import. These should be imported to serve mostly construction sector and floating structure. 

Singapore’s flat steel demand dropped 16.5% y-o-y from 719,987 tonnes in 2021 to 601,294 tonnes in 2022. Apart from Philippines, Singapore also has no production of flat steel. Total demand is served by import and there are some re-exports. Flat steel import increased moderately, by 2.7% y-o-y to 1.3 million tonnes and export picked up significantly, by 27.4% y-o-y to 712,122 tonnes in 2022. 

Thailand’s flat steel demand shrank significantly, at 16% y-o-y to 10.2 million tonnes in 2022. Production dropped by half a million tonnes to 2.5 million tonnes. Import dropped by 1.5 million tonnes and export dropped nearly 100k tonnes to 508,159 tonnes. Part of the significant decline in flat steel demand was de-stocking activity in 2022 due to the huge pileup of inventory in 2021 (flat steel demand rose 2 million tonnes in 2021). 

Vietnam, the largest flat steel consuming country in the region, experienced a stagnant growth in flat steel demand, at 11 million tonnes in 2022. However, production dropped 15.4% y-o-y or around a million tonnes to 6 million tonnes. Import dropped nearly a million tonnes to below 10 million tonnes and export shrank significantly, by 2 million tonnes to below 5 million tonnes. 

See more details in 2023 SEAISI Statistical Yearbook