BRASSLIA (Scrap Monster): Latin American crude steel production remaining unchanged to 28.4 million metric tons in the first five months of 2012, as per latest data released by Latin American steel association Alacero.
According to Alacero, Latin America produced 5.7 million metric tons of crude steel in May, which was up 6% year-on-year and down 1% month-on-month.
Mexican crude steel production rose by 7% year-on-year to 1.6 million metric tons in May. Argentina and Brazil output saw year-on-year decreases of 8% and 12% respectively.
The Latin America's finished steel trade deficit in the January-April period of the current year was 4.1 million metric tons, significantly greater than the 2.3 million mt deficit in the first four months of 2011.
Alacero attributed the increase to a deepening deficit of 1.5 million metric tons in Mexico. Colombia and Peru have the highest deficits after Mexico, with 568,922 metric tons and 474,283 metric tons respectively.
Apparent finished steel use in Latin America reached 22 million mt in the first four months of 2012, up nine percent compared to the same period a year ago, against a production level of 18.7 million metric tons.
Mexico and Brazil led overall consumption with increases of 15 percent and 13 percent respectively, while Peru suffered a contraction of 11 percent, all on year-on-year basis.
Meanwhile, Latin American finished steel production in January-May reached 23.8 million metric tons. In the January-May period, Brazil was responsible for 46 percent of the volume with 11 million metric tons. Mexico was the second largest finished steel producer of the region with 6.7 million metric tons.
In May, finished steel production was 5 million metric tons, representing a three percent increase over the same month last year. Mexico stimulated this growth with an increase in production of eight percent, while Argentina and Colombia slightly declined in comparison to May 2011.
In April 2012, the steel consumption of Latin America was 5.7 million metric tons, higher than finished steel production in the month which totaled 4.8 million metric tons.
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