Steel exports from the USA increased in May over April by 11.6% according to government data. “Exports of American-made steel increased in May primarily due to improved shipments to our NAFTA partners and other countries in the Western Hemisphere. Exports increased slightly to Asia and declined to Europe. While the increase in May is encouraging, economic conditions in many international markets are in turmoil, especially Asia and the EU, making it difficult to conclude that the May data are the beginning of a positive trend at this point,” said David Phelps, president, AIIS (American Institute for International Steel). For the first five months of 2013 compared with 2012, exports declined by 11.3%. “The data show that US exports declined to all international markets for the first five months of the year compared to the same period of 2012. These data reflect a pattern of weakness in 2013, especially in the NAFTA and other Western Hemispheric markets. The declines are substantial, even for the smaller markets, such as the EU and Asia. Economic weakness in many of our trading partners clearly is having a negative impact on the US’s steel export trade,” concluded Phelps.

Total steel exports in May 2013 were 1.163mt (million tonnes) compared with 1.041mt in April 2013, an 11.6% increase, and a 7.9% decrease compared with May 2012. According to year-to-date figures, exports decreased 11.3% compared with 2012 or from 6.106mt in 2012 to 5.418mt in 2013.

The American Institute for International Steel is the only steel related association which supports free trade. The Institute accomplishes its mission through advocacy, networking, communications and education.