The Australian government indicated that global demand for steel is expected to grow 5.8% in 2021, reflecting the ongoing recovery of most major economies after the Covid-19 lows.
More moderate growth is also likely in 2022 and 2023.
Overall, the outlook for Australia‘s mineral exports continues to improve as the world economy recovers from the impact of the pandemic.
To the same extent, according to the US Department of Commerce, record iron ore prices have driven an increase in earnings from Australian exports.
The slowdown in the recovery after 2021 and new outbreaks (and variants) of the pandemic present key risks to global economic growth and steel consumption in the second half of 2021 and beyond.
For now, strong demand for steel in the middle of supply chains, which are still recovering, continued to see high prices for most steel products in the United States, the European Union and Asia in the September quarter.
Australia produces alumina, coal, iron ore, copper, tin, gold, silver, uranium, nickel, tungsten, rare earth elements, mineral sands, lead, zinc, diamonds, natural gas and oil.
Furthermore, Australia is the world’s largest net exporter of coal, accounting for 29% of world coal exports.
World demand for steel
Global steel production remains significantly above pre-Covid-19 levels.
Despite further outbreaks of the pandemic, steel production has remained resilient in the major steel-producing economies so far in 2021.
World steel production approached 1 billion tons in the first half of the year.
This is 12% higher compared to the same period in 2020, and is significantly above average levels in the years leading up to the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the Australian government.
The surge in global steel production reflects the strengthening of global economic activity, as economies gradually emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Global GDP growth remains forecast at 6.0% in 2021. And the world’s two largest economies, the United States and China, are at the forefront of this resurgence, with forecast GDP growth in 2021 of 7.0 and 8.1%, respectively.