Demand for steel rose by a mere 0.6% in 2014 and could grow even slower, according to the World Steel Association. The industry body has forecast steel demand to grow by 0.5% in 2015, but expects it to recover and increase by 1.4% in 2016.

China’s steel growth is expected to decline by 0.5% in 2015 and 2016, pulling down global expansion.

Though 2015 looks difficult, the situation may change in the next year. If it does, steel demand may look much better in 2016.

The developed world, too, is expected to underperform in 2015, partly due to a high base effect and weak demand in European Union countries. But the developing world, ex-China, is expected to see better growth in demand. India, too, is expected to see demand grow.

Weak demand may keep up the pressure on steel prices, but China remains the country to watch closely. If its government decides to spur growth—a few stimulus measures were announced recently—then steel demand can recover quickly from these low levels.

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