MEPS estimate for world crude steel output this year at 1176 million tonnes. This represents an increase of 4.1 percent over the 2005 outturn. Blastfurnace iron production is predicted to reach 827.5 million tonnes - 5.4 percent up on the figure recorded in the previous twelve months. Only modest gains are expected for direct reduced ironmaking. The majority of the steel output improvement will take place in China and India.