The IMF has released its latest World Economic Outlook noting that the global recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine remains slow and uneven. This was their conclusion before the onset of the conflict between Israel and Gaza. Global growth is forecast to slow from 3.5% in 2022 to 3.0% in 2023 and to 2.9% in 2024, down 0.1% from July’s update. Advanced economies are expected to see a more pronounced slowdown from 2.6% in 2022 to 1.5% in 2023 and 1.4% in 2024. Stronger-than-expected US momentum has been offset by weaker-than-expected growth in the euro area. The organisation sees risks to their outlook for the world economy as more balanced compared to six months earlier but still tilted to the downside.
The World Steel Association’s latest Short-Range Outlook has downgraded global steel demand growth in 2023 from 2.3% six months earlier to 1.8% after contracting by 3.3% in 2022. 2024 global steel demand growth was raised to 1.9% from 1.7% in the previous report. The WSA noted that steel demand has been impacted by high inflation and the interest rate environment. It also expects China’s property market to stabilise in the latter part of this year. The WSA expects China’s steel demand to grow by 2.0% this year following a contraction of 3.5% in 2022. However, growth is forecast to be flat in 2024. India is expected to continue to rapidly expand its consumption of finished steel products, up from 9.3% growth in 2022 to 8.6% growth in 2023 and 7.7% growth in 2024.