Steel sector seeks to reduce inventories hinh anh 1A steel factory (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – The steel sector is looking for ways to boost domestic sale and export to reduce inventories, which have been increasing in the first quarter.

According to the Vietnam Steel Association (VSA), more than 576,000 tonnes of construction steel remained unsold as of the end of March 2017, up 17 percent over the amount at the end of the previous month.

In the first quarter of 2017, the sector produced over 4.63 million tonnes of steel, a year-on-year rise of 18.8 percent, and sold over 3.76 million tonnes, a yearly increase of 6.5 percent.

It is expected to produce 4.5 million tonnes of steel and sell 4.1 million tonnes in the second quarter of this year.

Vice Chairman of the VSA Nguyen Van Sua said domestic businesses have to compete with cheap imported products.

Meanwhile, many countries such as the US, Australia, Thailand and Malaysia are intensifying trade protection measures and imposing high tariffs on Vietnamese-made steel products, he said.

Domestic businesses are fiercely competing with one another to maintain their market shares at home.

The VSA advised enterprises to keep a close watch on the domestic and global market developments to make flexible adjustments to production plans and sale policies, as well as seek new export markets.

The association also called on ministries to tighten management of quality of steel products on the market, reduce the import of cheap steel, fight trade fraud, and create a level environment for domestic companies.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade has recently taken a number of trade defence measures to protect local manufacturers, including slapping an import tariff of 21.3 percent on steel billets within one year, from March 22, 2017 to March 21, 2018.

The ministry has also imposed anti-dumping tariffs on galvanized steel products imported from China and the Republic of Korea.

The ministry will keep a close watch of the market in order to make timely response to new developments.-VNA