Top steelmakers of 2009: Chinese mills continue to dominate rankings
2009 was a year when world steel production showed massively divergent trends – strongly up in China and sharply down almost everywhere else. As a result, Chinese companies dominate the Top 20 steelmaking companies even more than they did last year.
Steel Business Briefing’s annual compilation of crude steel production figures shows nine Chinese steel companies were in the Top 20 in 2009 – up from seven in 2008 – and five of these are in the Top Ten. All but one of the Chinese companies moved up in the rankings, in some cases because of mergers and acquisitions.
ArcelorMittal remained No 1 steelmaker, despite a fall of 29% in its production. Chinese mills Hebei and Baosteel occupy the numbers 2 and 3 positions. Japan’s Nippon Steel, which was second in 2008, fell to eighth position after a 31% drop in production. Posco, which is based in Korea moved up into fourth place.
China’s Shougang and Valin, and India’s Sail are new entrants to the Top 20 this year. They replace Riva of Italy, Sumitomo Metal Industries of Japan and ThyssenKrupp of Germany.
Indian based Tata Steel, which owns Anglo-Dutch Corus slipped from number 8 to number 10.
Steel Business Briefing’s Managing Editor Roger Manser believes 2010 will see similar results. He says “In 2010, I expect the top three to remain unchanged – ArcelorMittal as No 1 and Hebei and Baosteel as numbers 2 and 3, though Baosteel is clearly keen on making an overseas purchase. However they will be followed in the top quintet by Posco and one or both of Nippon and JFE, the top two Japanese companies. Wuhan, currently number 5, is perhaps less acquisitive than some of the other Chinese conglomerates, and so may fall to number 6.”