Steel industry in Europe - statistics & facts

Europe’s steel industry accounts for roughly nine percent of global crude steel production. Europe is home to some of the oldest and largest steel companies in the world such as ArcelorMittal, headquartered in Luxembourg City. The production of crude steel in the EU has remained stable despite shifting global trade and markets. Construction, automotive manufacturing, and mechanical engineering account for the main part of Europe’s steel consumption.

The history of industrial steel production in Europe dates back as early as the 19th century in some European countries, such as the United Kingdom and Germany. Like many other regions, crude steel production was closely linked to the production of coal. One of Europe’s largest producers of steel, Italy, was a world pioneer in the development of electric furnaces in the 20th century.

In more recent times, cheaper steel production in other countries has undercut the European steel industry. Since Europe has maintained a high steel demand, the European Union is among the leading importers of steel products in the world. Simultaneously, the EU is the leading exporter of scrap steel. Increased competition led to the collapse of many European steel producers in the 1950s, and ThyssenKrupp had to sell its elevator unit in 2020. The oil crisis of 1973 and the 1980s recession led to a further decline in the European steel industry. At the beginning of 2020, the COVID-19 crisis led to a decline in steel production worldwide. While China’s production output rebounded in the second quarter, resulting in a net year-on-year increase as of June 2020, Europe’s production overall declined by 20 percent between June 2019 and June 2020.

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Steel industry in Europe

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