World Steel Output Rises, China Hits Record

China accounted for almost half of the total, producing 52.3 million tons of steel in August.

World steel production rose in August from July and hit a record level in China but total output still remained below last year's levels, data from the World Steel Association released on Sept. 21.

The association's 66 member countries produced 106.5 million tons of steel in August, up from 103.5 million in July.

The August figure was the highest monthly level since the start of the year but was 5.5% lower than total production in August 2008.

"In August, almost all the major steel-producing countries -- including China, Japan, South Korea, Germany, the U.S. and Brazil -- have shown their highest monthly figures so far this year," the association said.

China accounted for almost half of the total, producing 52.3 million tons of steel in August -- 22% higher than in August of last year and "the highest amount of crude steel China has ever produced in a month," it added.

Global steel output has been rising since April following a collapse in demand as a result of the decline in the construction and auto industries.

In the first eight months of the year, steel production was 759.5 million tons -- 18.1% lower than first eight months of 2008.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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