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Steel and metal export trading in the UK - Statistics & Facts

The United Kingdom was home to roughly two thousand VAT and/or PAYE based manufacturers of basic metals in 2019, of which the vast majority were smaller enterprises with less than four employees. These manufacturers were responsible for the production of some 7.5 million metric tons of crude steel as of 2017. However, figures had noticeably declined between 2014 and 2017.

Despite this decline in crude steel output, the overall export value of ferrous waste and scrap saw a net increase in the past years, growing by 420 million British pounds between 2010 and 2018, reaching 2.4 billion British pounds in the latter year. This translated into a volume of approximately 8.7 million metric tons.

In regards to the sale of ores and concentrates, the UK exported 5,300 metric tons of aluminum in 2018, which was the second highest figure recorded between 2011 and that year. This trend was also true for overseas sales of niobium, tantalum, vanadium and zirconium, with figures amounting to 1,557 metric tons in 2018.

Regarding exports of iron and steel products, values climbed to 331.6 million British pounds for the sale of such items in the form of bars and rods. Overall exports of iron and steel reached a value of 7.9 billion U.S. dollars in 2018. This was an increase compared to the previous two years, but lower than the peak of nearly 10.3 billion U.S. dollars recorded in 2014. Of the amount generated in 2018, the European Union accounted for over half of total sales.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 39 most important statistics relating to "Steel and metal export trading in the UK".


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