Evraz PLC (LON:EVR) reported higher production and sales of steel in the fourth quarter of 2020, helped by a jump in North American output and a recovery in steel export markets.
Consolidated crude steel output of 3.47mln tonnes was up 7.4%compared to the preceding quarter, the Russia-based, FTSE 100-listed group said in a statement, meaning the full year total of 13.6mln tonnes was down 1.3% on the prior year.
Production in the smaller North American business leapt 26.6% in the quarter but at 1.58mln tonnes for the year was still down 15% on 2019.
Sales of steel products increased 12% to 3.4mln tonnes, driven primarily by sales of semi-finished products, which grew 30.4%.
This was “mainly the result of a recovery in export markets and weaker demand for finished construction products in Russia due to seasonal factors”, the company said.
For the first quarter of 2021, production and sales volumes for construction, flat-rolled and rail products are expected to continue to improve in line with market recovery, Evraz said.
“For tubular products, the uncertainty in energy markets remains a significant factor impacting North American customers, however, the OCTG market has started demonstrating early signs of returning demand.”