Nippon Steel & Sumikin Stainless Steel (NSSC) expanded the stainless cold rolled flat steel output share by 3.2 percentage points to 27.9% in fiscal 2006 ended March 2007 from fiscal 2005. Japanese output increased by 15.3% to 1.668 million tonnes. Nisshin Steel’s share was 24.0%. The top 2 makers’ share represented more than 50% of the total output as fiscal 2005. All makers increased the cold stainless flat steel output in fiscal 2006 from fiscal 2005 when they operated at full capacity to meet higher demand. NSSC operated sheet plant in Hikari and Kashima plants and plate plant at Yawata. The third cold stainless flat steel maker of JFE Steel, which focuses on chrome series for cold rolled stainless, increased the output by 65,400 tonnes in fiscal 2006 from fiscal 2005 when the users shifted to chrome products from nickel series due to surging nickel ingot price.
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