Europe's steel imports from China almost doubled during the first 11 months of 2007 versus the same period in 2006, the European Commission said Thursday as it continues to investigate whether China is illegally selling steel at below cost.
The European Union executive office's figures show that China shipped 10.6 million metric tons to Europe from January to November last year, an increase of 91 percent. China provided around a third of the EU's steel imports, far ahead of other suppliers in Turkey, India, South Korea and Switzerland.
EU officials are currently examining if China is illegally selling some steel at prices so low they are hurting European steelmakers such as ArcelorMittal SA and ThyssenKrupp AG.
The investigation began last month as statistics showed that the 27-nation European Union's yawning trade gap with China swelled by a quarter during the first nine months of 2007.
Speaking to traders and service centres recently leads me to believe that there is very little steel coming in to the UK from China at the moment. Maybe a weaker sterling is partly responsible, or maybe domestic demand back in China.