China will see a balance of supply and demand for steel in 2007, with the steel price remaining close to last year's level, according to a report released Tuesday by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
The average steel price in 2007 is expected to be around 3,800 yuan (about US$507) per ton, slightly higher than last year's 3,737 yuan (about US$498), the report says.
It says that the country's raw steel output in 2007 is projected to be 462 million tons, up 10 percent year-on-year, eight percentage points lower than the growth in 2006.
Domestic steel demand will also grow by about 10 percent, indicating an equilibrium of supply and demand.
The International Iron & Steel Institute (IISI) predicted in an earlier report that the international steel market would see a balanced supply and demand situation in 2007, with steel prices remaining at a relatively high level.
IISI estimates global consumption of steel will reach 1.18 billion tons in 2007, up 5.2 percent on 2006.
(Xinhua News Agency January 19, 2007)