Demand of Steel Products is Firm

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry carried out the demand hearing which hears demand trends from steel product’s users, such as a car makers, shipbuilding makers, etc. According to it, Japanese auto output in November increased for the first time in two months and the production of completed car in 2005 is likely to increase 2.8% from 2004 to 10,800,000 sets and it will increase by 1.7 % from fiscal 2004 to 10,800,000 sets in fiscal 2005. The amount of stock of construction at shipbuilding industry also increased at the end of December. In all the industries, such as industrial machinery makers, construction machinery makers, heavy electric machinery makers, order volume or the amount of production is expanded and the production trend of the manufacturing industry is changing steadily.The domestic autocar sales in December decreased by 12.4% from the same month in 2004, the sales of autotruck increased by 5.9 % and the total sales decreased by 9.2%. The total sales have decreased for two consecutive months.The autocar export in November decreased by 3.6% from the same month in 2004, the export of auto truck decreased by 23.8% and the total export increased by 0.5%. The total export has increased for four consecutive months. The export for North America increased by 9.2%, for Europe decreased by 13.4% and for Asia decreased by 25%.