Global Iron Ore Strategic Planning Outlook – Q2 2022
Chinese steel production had a torrid start to the year with the steel production witnessing a 6.7% contraction during Jan-May 2022. We expect China to play catchup for rest of the year as demand turns a corner thereby ending the year with nearly flat growth (-0.2%). Iron ore prices remain at high levels as supply disruption persists. As the Chinese economy shifts from investment to consumption and scrap increasingly displaces pig iron, demand for iron ore will continue to shrink. We have cut our supply forecast in response to lower demand and the ever increasing challenge posed by heightened ESG requirements. A key challenge for suppliers of seaborne iron ore over the next 10+ years is how to adapt to a market that is on the verge of going ex-growth but with increasingly stringent quality requirements to meet the needs of steel decarbonisation.