According to news released by the Korean media a few daysago, South Korea faces serious problems in employment, investment andconsumption. South Korean steel growth may slow down in 2019. In the medium andlong term, the Korea Economic Confidence Index (ESI) will be below average.
The media cited data recently released by the Korea IndustryAlliance (FKI), saying that the future development of leading Koreanindustries, including the automotive, steel and petrochemical industries, isnot optimistic. It is predicted that due to trade protectionism, the growthrate of Korean steel exports will decrease by 10% in 2019, and the growth rateof petrochemical products and automobile exports will decrease by 5% and 3%respectively.
In the last week of November, the price of Korean hot-rolledsteel sheets began to fall due to slowing demand and China's lower exportprices. Since mid-November, there has been little change in the shortage ofsteel stocks in Korea. At the same time, the price of imported rebar rose by10,000 won / ton (about 8.96 US dollars / ton), reaching 690,000 won / ton(about 618.48 US dollars / ton) ~ 700,000 won / ton (about 627.44 US dollars /ton ); inventory is around 150,000 tons, the lowest level since reaching thelargest inventory (470,000 tons) in March.