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Plate market research

In 2012 Metal Expert Consulting carried out a research on the global plate market within the framework of one of its projects.

During the course of the works, the current state and prospects of global plate consumption were assessed, the existing global plate production capacities as well as projects to launch new or expand the operating capacities were analyzed in detail. Special focus was on plate consumption analysis for CIS countries, primarily Russia and Ukraine.

Global consumption of wide plate (predominantly over 3,000 mm in width) amounted roughly to 95 mt in 2011, up 4 mt on the previous year, Metal Expert Consulting estimates. The increase was mainly driven by shipbuilding development in Asia, first of all in China, as well as by pipeline construction involving use of large-diameter pipes, and construction industry as a whole.

Upwards of 75% of plate is consumed in Asian countries, first of all in China, South Korea, Japan. Europe, North America and the CIS are among the largest plate consuming regions. The main consuming industry is shipbuilding, and big volumes are used by construction, engineering, large-diameter pipe production, etc.

The analysis and forecast of consumption by industries revealed that the structure of plate demand will tend to change significantly in the coming years.

According to our calculations, steelmakers in the world market are now capable of producing some 100 mt of plate at mills 3000 and above, the aggregate plate production capacity averaging 150 mt. The announced projects show that over 9 mt of new capacities overall will be put into service in the next few years.

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