Industry and globalisation

74th session of the OECD Steel Committee 1-2 July 2013


At the Steel Committee meeting held in Paris on 1-2 July 2013, government and industry delegates from OECD and non-OECD economies discussed the following issues:

  • The economic performance and viability of the steel industry. Issues discussed included the economic performance of the steel industry, trends and strategies that help firms increase profitability, and challenges and opportunities for the steel industry in the face of sluggish demand growth and excess capacity. Economies in the process of implementing initiatives to improve the viability of their steel industries and that have longer-term steel industry plans were invited to provide updates of their policies.
  • The importance of maintaining open markets for steel. Participants discussed factors that contribute to excess capacity and trade frictions in steel. Subsidies and government support measures that promote investment in steelmaking facilities or sustain companies in distress that would otherwise shut down are a major source of trade friction. Issues related to export restrictions on raw materials and the behaviour of state-owned enterprises were also discussed.  
  • The outlook for the world economy and global steel industry. The world economic situation and the latest OECD economic forecasts were discussed. The World Steel Association’s Short Range Outlook for apparent steel use in 2013 and 2014 released in April 2013 was discussed in view of the most recent market developments.
  • Steel market reports by regional steel associations. Regional steel associations provided presentations on key market developments and policy challenges in their regions. The OECD Secretariat presented a study which examines the structure and prospects for the steel industry in the ASEAN region.
  • Steelmaking raw material markets. Participants heard about future supply-demand balances in key steelmaking raw material markets, the current situation in iron ore markets and a recent OECD study on the economic effects of export restrictions on raw materials.
  • Steelmaking capacity in the global steel industry. The Steel Committee discussed the main factors that contribute to the capacity imbalance, including the market downturn, government interventions and other market-distorting practices, and concluded that governments and industry will need to work together to address the near- and long-term issues associated with excess capacity in a comprehensive manner. The Steel Committee agreed to continue to examine the issue of excess capacity in global markets and the role that government policies may play in that regard.
  • Energy markets. These markets are important for the economic performance of the steel industry, not only in terms of their impact on the cost of making steel but also as a market for steel products. Energy exploration and transportation, in particular, are important for future steel demand growth.

Item 3. Economic performance and viability of the global steel industry

Item 4. Maintaining open markets for steel

Item 5. Outlook for the world economy and global steel industry

Item 6. Steel market reports by regional steel associations

Item 7. Steelmaking raw material markets

Item 8. Steelmaking capacity in the global steel industry

Expert presentations on industry and policy initiatives

Item 9. Energy markets and the steel industry

Item 11. Chairman’s statement

Item 12. Future meetings

The 75th session of the Committee has been tentatively scheduled for 5-6 December 2013 at OECD headquarters in Paris.


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