Stainless steel core materials are highly dependent on imports, and supply and demand conditions are rising steadily. The core materials of stainless steel are chromium and nickel. The chrome ore is mainly imported from South Africa, accounting for more than 70%. The nickel ore is mainly from Indonesia and the Philippines, accounting for over 98%. In terms of supply, China's stainless steel production accounts for more than 50% of global stainless steel production. In 2018, China plans to add 10.82 million tons of stainless steel capacity, of which 400 series is 4.3 million tons, accounting for nearly 40%. The recent shutdown of the medium (industrial) frequency furnace in the Dainan area will affect the production capacity of about 1 to 2 million tons of stainless steel rod and wire. In terms of demand, there was a steady increase in demand. In 2017, the apparent consumption of stainless steel reached a record high of 1984.68 million tons, a growth rate of 5.37%. The downstream end is more diversified than that of Pudong Steel, and is widely used in tableware, white goods, chemical energy, Transportation and aerospace and other fields.
China's stainless steel export opportunities and challenges coexist. With the establishment and in-depth development of the “Belt and Road” construction, China's iron and steel enterprises actively go out to invest in the development of mineral resources, build steel plants, and promote international capacity cooperation. Since 2012, the apparent consumption of steel in ASEAN countries has shown an upward trend, especially in Vietnam. Obviously, the apparent consumption of steel increased from 10.956 million tons in 2012 to 22.328 million tons, with an average annual compound growth rate of 19.48%. It is the main export area of steel in China and the market prospect is promising.
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Lucia X.//SMC Editor