BEIJING, March 2 (Dow Jones) -- China is expected to produce 730 million metric tons of crude steel this year, a rise of around 7% to a new record, the China Iron and Steel Association said in a report on its website Friday.
These projections suggest a modest production uptick is still likely despite a relatively weak steel sector.
Citing data from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the association said apparent crude steel consumption is likely to reach 690 million tons.
Steel product exports are estimated around 50 million tons, while imports may reach 15 million tons. Last year, exports reached 48.9 million tons and imports 15.6 million tons.
Iron ore imports may reach 730 million tons this year, it said. Last year, imports reached 686 million tons, a record level.