Preliminary data collected by SEAISI revealed that total ASEAN steel demand registered a double digit growth rate of 12.8% y-o-y to nearly 78 million tonnes in 2016. All countries, except Singapore, recorded strong consumption growth rates in the year.
Indonesia’s steel demand is estimated to grow at around 10% y-o-y, to exceed 12 million tonnes in 2016. Production is estimated to grow by 5-6% y-o-y. After the slowdown in import volume in the last two years (2014 to 2015), import volume picked up in 2016 and is estimated to touch 7 million tonnes. Export showed a sharp decline to below a million tonnes in 2016.
Malaysia’s steel demand also grew significantly, registering a double digit growth rate to touch 11 million tonnes in 2016. However, steel production is estimated to continue to slow down to below 4 million tonnes. On the other hand, import grew by more than a million tonnes to around 8.4 million tonnes in 2016. Export volume declined to just a million tonnes, a drop of 26% y-o-y.
Philippines’ steel demand in 2016 continued to expand, albeit at a slower growth rate of 11% y-o-y, compared to nearly 20% y-o-y in 2015. Domestic steel production is estimated to increase by a few hundred thousand tonnes while import grew more significantly, by more than half a million tonnes in 2016.
Singapore is the only country in the region that experienced a decline in steel demand in 2016. This was mainly due to the decline in the construction sector in the country. The country’s apparent steel consumption is estimated to contract by 25-26% y-o-y to below 3 million tonnes in 2016. However, domestic production managed to register a moderate growth rate of 4-5% y-o-y, but overall volume was still low when compared to the volume before 2012. The slowdown in steel demand impacted import more with volume declining by nearly a million tonnes.
According to the Iron and Steel Institute of Thailand, apparent steel consumption in Thailand could have grown 15% y-o-y to reach 19 million tonnes in 2016. Production expanded by 23% y-o-y to nearly 8 million tonnes while import surged by a million tonnes to reach 12 million tonnes in the year. However, it is believed that the high growth rate was mainly due to stocking up from traders and steel producers, following the price increases in the market.
Vietnam continued to register the highest steel consumption growth rate in the region in 2016. It is estimated that the growth rate in steel demand in the country continued to exceed 20% y-o-y in the year. As a result, steel demand in 2016 is expected to register 22 million tonnes. Domestic steel production continued to surge significantly, by 20% y-o-y to surpass 8 million tonnes. Import is estimated to increase by 3-4 million tonnes to touch 17 million tonnes in 2016. Export is estimated to have also increased from 2.8 million tonnes in 2015 to 3.8 million tonnes in 2016.