Last year was characterised by two partially contradictory trends. In the UK and elsewhere in Europe the year was one of slow recovery from the depths of recession, although steel demand remains well below pre-recession levels.
Globally though the major development was rapid continued rise in raw material prices, most notably for iron ore fuelled once again by output growth in China and other emerging nations.
As well as chronicling the events of the past year the report contains a number of key messages for the year ahead. And none more so than in the field of climate change policy.
The complex and costly mix of UK and EU policy measures – whether they affect us directly such as the EU Emissions Trading scheme or indirectly through escalating energy prices – make the UK an ever more difficult place in which to produce steel.
The review can be downloaded from the UK Steel web site: www.eef.org.uk/uksteel