In 2004, China produced 272,79 million tons of steel and 251,85 million tons of pig iron with rises of 22.7 % and 24.2% respectively last year, and produced 297,23 million tons of rolled steel (recycled steel included), with an increase of 23.29%. According to the calculation, the growth rate of apparent steel consumption dropped from 25.8% in 2003 to 10.71% in 2004. After investigation, we found that the decrease of the steel storage has decreased the rate of actual consumption to around 13%, a 12.8% decrease year-on-year.
With the importation decreasing and the exportation increasing for steel and steel billets, the net volume of imported steel decreased from 36.55 million tons in 2003 to approximately 13.83 million tons in 2004, a cut by 22.72 million tons, or 62.16%, that is, 45% of the steel production increased in 2004 is for importation and exportation. This change is a significant transition: on one hand it shows that in recent years, the development of steel industry is, in general, sound, active and effective, and on the other hand it also reminds us that the room for further expanding steel production capacity becomes smaller than ever.
Chinese steel industry developed rapidly thanks to the high market demand for steel. It kept a good balance between production and sales and made substantial economic returns in the first quarter of 2005, in which China achieved the expected favorable balance for the first time. In March 2005,the international negotiation on iron ore and its increasing price became the focus of the world. There are many factors, such as national macro-control of the steel industry, the rising price of iron freight and policies of export tax refund, all of which will have a great influence on the national steel industry. So, what can we expect of the Chinese steel industry development in the future?
As far as Chinese steel industry is concerned, the year of 2005 is very crucial for its historical transition, because in this year, the output of Chinese steel production will reach 300 million tons or even more, which will be a great leap in China's history, and which also shows that from now on, we should carefully transfer our attention from the growth in quantity to the improvement of quality, to the optimization of structure and to a much more comprehensive, coordinative, and sustainable development.
After in-depth surveys of steel manufacturers, according to years of experienced research on steel industry, using quantitative and qualitative analysis, relating the changes concerning supply and demand, we made this report, which gives an overall summary of the development of Chinese steel industry in 2004. Through accurate data and comprehensive descriptions, we present you detailed analyses on issues facing Chinese steel industry in 2005, such as market circumstances, business operations, market for steel products and sustainable development. Then, with the combination of quantitative and qualitative analyses, we predicted the development of Chinese steel industry and provided reliable analyses, for companies to build their development strategy and to seize opportunities.