China Steel Output to Hit New High in August

Output increased 2% to 1.65 million tons

China's crude steel output will likely hit a record high in August, state media reported on Sept. 10, marking the fourth consecutive monthly increase in production by the world's biggest steel maker.

Steel output increased 2% to around 51.65 million tons in August from a month earlier, the official Xinhua news agency said, citing an estimate from the China Iron and Steel Association (CISA).

The 71 biggest steel mills in the country produced 39.43 million tons last month, up two percent from July.

Chinese steel makers ramped up production after the central government last year unveiled a four-trillion-yuan (US$586 billion) package of stimulus measures on infrastructure and other construction projects. But manufacturers have been forced to cut prices, as supply of some products exceeds demand.

China's largest steel maker Baosteel on Sept. 7 cut the October spot market price for some of its products after twice hiking prices earlier this year, the official Shanghai Securities News reported, without providing an exact figure. Other steel makers followed Baosteel's lead and cut prices on Sept. 8, the newspaper added. Earlier this month, Hebei Iron and Steel Group slashed its prices by as much as 19%.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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