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Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market

Now more and more importers import stainless steel products from China to your country. In order to save you time, better understand the Chinese stainless steel market, buy high-quality stainless steel products, we wrote this article. In this post, I want to share:

Let’s dive in now.

Basic Properties of Stainless Steel

(1)What is stainless steel?

Stainless steel refers to steel with certain chemical stability in air, water, acid, alkali or other corrosive media. Special steel with excellent properties of corrosion resistance, heat resistance and low temperature resistance.
The corrosion resistance of stainless steel is mainly due to the addition of chromium. Due to the reason of chromium, under the action of corrosive medium, a strong and dense oxide film is formed on the surface of steel parts, which is called passivation film. This film is very thin and transparent, and the naked eye can still see the bright silver metal surface. This film isolates the metal from the outside world, prevents further corrosion of the metal, and also has self-repairing ability. If damaged, chromium in steel and oxygen in the medium will regenerate passivation film and continue to play a protective role.

In addition, in order to make stainless steel have corrosion resistance and good mechanical and physical properties at the same time, according to different requirements, in addition to adding a higher content of chromium, the steel also matches with other alloy elements such as nickel, molybdenum, manganese, nitrogen, so that the steel can obtain sufficient strength, plasticity and toughness, as well as good technological properties, such as weldability, processing and forming.

Difference Between Stainless Steel and Carbon Steel:

Steel is an alloy made out of iron and carbon. The main difference between the two is in the components that are added to the steel to make it useful for its intended purposes. While in the case of Carbon Steel, Carbon is the main alloying element. In carbon steel, the properties are mainly defined by the amount of carbon it has. For this alloy, the amounts of other alloying elements like chromium, manganese, cobalt, tungsten are not defined. Whereas, Stainless steel has high chromium content that forms an invisible layer on the steel to prevent corrosion and staining. Carbon steel has a higher carbon content, which gives the steel a lower melting point, more malleability and durability, and better heat distribution. The other differences include: there is an in built chromium oxide layer in stainless steel, which is not present in carbon steel; Carbon steel can corrode whereas stainless steel is protected from corrosion; Stainless steel is preferred for many consumer products and can be used decoratively in construction, while carbon steel is often preferred in manufacturing, production and in projects where the steel is mostly hidden from view; Stainless Steel has lower thermal conductivity than Carbon steel.

(2) Classification of Stainless Steel
There are many ways to classify stainless steel. Common classification methods of stainless steel are as follows:

  • 1) According to the structure of steel, it can be divided into austenitic stainless steel, martensitic stainless steel, ferritic stainless steel, duplex stainless steel and precipitation hardening stainless steel.
  • 2) According to the functional classification of steel, it can be divided into low-temperature stainless steel, heat-resistant stainless steel, wear-resistant stainless steel, non-magnetic stainless steel, free-cutting stainless steel and superplastic stainless steel.
  • 3) According to the chemical composition of steel, it can be divided into chromium-manganese-nitrogen stainless steel (200 series), chromium-nickel-chromium-nickel-molybdenum stainless steel (300 series) and chromium series (400 series).
  • We will sort out the upstream and middle reaches of the stainless steel industry chain, and explain the different chemical composition of steel, that is, 200 series, 300 series, 400 series stainless steel, super and duplex.
  • (3) Introduction of stainless steel grades
  • According to the chemical composition of the steel, the mainstream stainless steel can be divided into four types: 200 series, 300 series and 400 series, super & duplex.

Stainless steels fall into several general classes: austenitic, ferritic, martensitic, duplex, and precipitation hardened. The distinction between each class is based primarily on the predominant phase present in the stainless steel as determined by the major alloying elements.

The major alloying elements in stainless steels are chromium and nickel. Chromium primarily provides corrosion resistance and additional strength. Nickel provides strength and some corrosion resistance. Minor alloying elements include manganese, carbon, and molybdenum. Manganese is present in steels in small quantities, but at higher concentrations it stabilizes austenite and partially replaces nickel in the 200-series steels. Carbon is largely an impurity in austenitic steel, but it is a strengthening element in ferritic and martensitic steel, much as it is for carbon and low-alloy steel. Molybdenum provides additional strength and resistance to chloride pitting. Other elements, such as titanium or niobium, serve other purposes specific to the application for which the alloy was developed.

400-series steels were the first versions of stainless steel. They include the ferritic and martensitic grades that contain only chromium as a major alloying element, making them less expensive than austenitic grades. They are magnetic, generally more resistant to chloride attack than 300-series alloys, and some grades may be strengthened by heat treating.

Type 410 contains about 12% chromium. The ability to strengthen this alloy by heat treating to form martensite makes it a martensitic grade. Its low chromium content provides modest corrosion resistance. Given enough time, exposure to weather will cause it to rust. Type 430 is a ferritic grade that contains about 17% chromium. It cannot be strengthened by heat treating. 400-series stainless steels are generally more resistant to chloride attack than 300-series.

With sufficient quantities of nickel, stainless steel remains austenite at room temperature, creating the austenitic steels. They are nonmagnetic and cannot be heat treated for through hardening like carbon steels because the phase transformation to martensite does not occur in these alloys. The primary reason for their use is their superior resistance to corrosion in the atmosphere and aggressive chemical environments compared to 400-series.

300-series alloys contain chromium and nickel, and are the most popular austenitic grades. Types 301 and 304 are the most common alloys in use and are for general use. They contain 18% chromium, 9% to 10% nickel, and up to 0.15% carbon (301) or 0.08% carbon (304) as an impurity. Other 300-series alloys are modified versions of these alloys to achieve specific properties. Type 316 contains 2%-3% molybdenum to improve the resistance to corrosion in chloride-containing environments. Types 304L, 316L and other L-grades contain reduced carbon, less than 0.03%, to avoid microstructure changes during welding and other thermal processes which can damage the corrosion resistance. This detrimental change is known as sensitization. Types 321 and 347 contain small amounts of titanium and niobium, respectively, to prevent sensitization. They are capable of service at elevated temperatures, while the L-grades are intended to resist sensitization during fabrication. The image below shows the austenite grains in a 304 alloy.

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Austenite grains in a 304 alloy. The particles on the grain boundaries are chromium carbides.

200-series steels, also austenitic, have manganese substituted for some of the nickel as a cost-saving measure. Grade 201 contains about 17% chromium, 6.5% manganese, and 4% nickel. It has corrosion resistance similar to 301.

Precipitation hardening (PH) steels are strengthened by heat treating to form precipitates, as well as by martensite formation. They can be strengthened to higher hardness than 400-series grades by an aging method similar to that of aluminum alloys. 17-4 PH and 17-7 PH steels contain 17% chromium and 4% or 7% nickel, respectively. Minor alloying elements can include copper, titanium and niobium, and others.

Duplex stainless steels allow savings in material costs in corrosive applications such as chemical processing, including chloride- and sulfur-bearing environments. They consist of a mixture of austenite and ferrite in roughly equal proportions. Duplex stainless steels are subdivided into lean, standard, super, or hyper duplex based on the quantity of alloying elements. Duplex stainless steels contain more chromium and less nickel than 300-series and typically include nitrogen as an additional austenite stabilizer and molybdenum for corrosion resistance. 2205 (22% chromium, 5% nickel, and 3% molybdenum) is a common standard duplex stainless steel, and 2507 (25% Cr, 7% Ni plus 4% Mo) is a common super-duplex steel. The micrograph below shows a duplex stainless steel.

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Micrograph of a duplex stainless steel. The brown colored phase is ferrite and the light colored phase is austenite. (Courtesy of Charles Young, P.E.)

The broad array of stainless steels available provides a vast portfolio of capabilities. However, each alloy has distinct advantages and disadvantages. When selecting a grade of stainless steels available it is important to consider how components will be fabricated and joined together, the specific environment to which it will be exposed, in addition to the considerations common to other alloys such as mechanical requirements and cost.

Table 1: Classification and Characteristics of Stainless Steel

200 series 300 series 400 series
Mn 5.5%-12% ≤2% ≤1%
Ni 1%-6% 6%-22% ≤0.75%
Cr 10.5-20% 15%-25% ≤10.5%
Cu 1.5%-2.5% NA NA
Fe Other Other Other
Manganese vapor does great harm to human body and is not conducive to environmental protection; its performance is worse than 300 series, but it has price advantage, and it is not easy to distinguish from 300 series, so it is difficult to recycle and reuse. It has anti-oxidation, corrosion resistance, high temperature resistance and other properties (non-magnetic, service temperature – 196 – 800 ), and is the most widely used in stainless steel. With 300 series of formability, economy, corrosion resistance, oxidation resistance and other properties, and has advantages in price, but for technical research requirements are very high.

Martenstic : Are plain chromium alloys with relatively high carbon levels. Are included in the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) 400 series. These steels have a moderate corrosion resistance, high strength and hardness developed by heat treatment. They have poor weldability and are magnetic.

Ferritic : Are plain chromium alloys with low carbon levels and are also included in the AISI series. These steel have moderate to excellent corrosion resistance depending on chromium content. They cannot be strengthened or hardened and have poor weldability except in thin gauges. They are magnetic.

Austenitic : These steels are included in both the AISI 300 and AISI 200 series and contain nickel with low to very low carbon contents. These materials have excellent corrosion and high temperature oxidation resistance. Strength and hardness can be increased by cold work. They have excellent cryogenic properties. They are non-magnetic. In steels in the 200 series, the nickel is partially replaced by manganese. These variants have properties similar to the 300 series, but have higher strength and lower corrosion resistance.

Duplex : These steels contain less nickel than the austenitic alloys and have very low carbon contents. They have a duplex (mixed) crystal structure of ferrite and austenite. These steels have excellent corrosion resistance, particularly to pitting, crevice corrosion and stress corrosion cracking. They also have high strength, excellent weldability and are magnetic.

grades - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market

Production and Marketing of Stainless Steel in China

(1) Distribution of stainless steel production capacity
Stainless steel production is growing steadily. At present, China still occupies the absolute majority of the global stainless steel production capacity. In 2017, China’s stainless steel production is 25774 thousand tons, while the global output in that year is 48081 thousand tons. China’s stainless steel production accounts for nearly 53% of the global output. Second, Asia excludes mainland China, South Korea and Indonesia, accounting for 16.78%, followed by Europe 15.34%, and the United States 5.73% of the global total.
Specific to the production of stainless steel in China in the past ten years, we can see that the mainstream of stainless steel in China is still 300 series. The 200 series and 400 series also show a gradual increase trend. The total stainless steel volume has declined in 2015, but increased steadily in other years.
At the same time, the productivity distribution of stainless steel has obvious tendency of regional agglomeration. In recent years, the rapid development of stainless steel in China has gradually formed a stainless steel industrial cluster in China.

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Figure 2 Global stainless steel production capacity distribution in 2017

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Figure 3 China’s stainless steel production capacity structure from 2008 to 2017

(2) Consumption of stainless steel
Stainless steel is the most important steel product in China’s special steel industry. Because of its good performance, stainless steel has been widely used in building decoration, transportation, aerospace, petrochemical industry, energy generation, food processing, environmental protection and medical treatment. In 2018, China’s stainless steel output reached 26.71 million tons, which is the world’s largest producer and consumer of stainless steel and plays an important role in the world stainless steel market.

According to the data released by the International Stainless Steel Forum (ISSF), in 2018, the global stainless steel output was 50.729 million tons, an increase of 5.5% over the same period of last year; among them, China’s output was 26.706 million tons, accounting for 53%, Europe’s total output was 7.385 million tons, accounting for about 15%, the United States and Japan accounted for 5.5% and 6.4%, respectively.
Before 2000, China’s stainless steel production hovered around 300,000 tons for a long time. After 2000, China’s stainless steel production entered a rapid growth stage. In 2002, it achieved a leap of 1 million tons and 50 million tons in 2006 respectively. During the financial crisis in 2008, it fell slightly, and then exceeded 1,000,20 and 25 million tons in 2010, 2014 and 2017. From 2002 to 2016, the annual growth rate of stainless steel production in China was 49.3%, 22.44% and 12% respectively, and the annual growth rate in 2017-18 was 4.17%. In the first half of 2019, China’s stainless steel output was 14.354 million tons, an increase of 5.23% over the same period last year. Generally speaking, China’s stainless steel production has steadily increased from a high-speed growth stage.
In 2018, the output of 300 series stainless steel accounted for 51%, that of 200 series was 31%, and that of 400 series was 18%. In the first eight months of 2019, the yield of 200 lines increased significantly, the proportion increased to 34%, the proportion of 300 lines maintained at about 49%, and the proportion of 200 lines was about 17%.
Before the second round of global stainless steel capacity expansion in 2000, Europe had long dominated global stainless steel production, ranking first in the industrial structure. Since then, the production capacity and output of stainless steel in Asia have started to rise, while the ratio of traditional stainless steel producing areas in Europe and America to the world’s total output has continued to decline. In 2005, the proportion of stainless steel production in Asia exceeded 50% for the first time in the world.
The consumption of stainless steel in the vast rural areas of China is still at a low level, and there is a huge blue sea. From the layout of stainless steel consumption terminals in China, the main consumption areas of stainless steel crude steel in China are urban construction and daily necessities for residents, mainly metal products and construction projects.
In the global stainless steel consumption structure, the largest proportion of stainless steel products and medical devices is 48%, followed by chemical and petrochemical products 16%, infrastructure 15%, automobile and transportation 10%, industry 8%, and other industries 3%.
Global Stainless Steel Industry Consumption
Apparent consumption and demand index of all stainless steel products worldwide are expected to increase slightly. The main driving force is from developing countries, such as China and India, as well as other Southeast Asian countries, Europe and the United States, where stainless steel consumption has matured and growth potential is limited.

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Review of Stainless Steel Price

  • Starting from the 2008 financial crisis, with the economic depression, stainless steel fell by 54%.
  • From 2009 to the beginning of 2011, China’s stimulus economic policy, 4 trillion investment to pull the price “V” type reversal;
  • Since then (2011-March 2014), commodity prices have fallen back, and this cycle has gone through three years, falling by nearly half;
  • March – mid May 2014: Indonesia’s nickel mine embargo, “Black Swan” incident, stainless steel in two months, a cumulative increase of 50%;
  • From mid-May 2014 to the end of 2015: in 2015, the price of stainless steel has shrunk by more than half.
  • From the beginning of 2016 till now, it is in the trend of shock rebound.

Relationship between stainless steel and pure nickel
As we all know, stainless steel is the main downstream consumption of nickel, and more than half of the nickel consumption comes from the downstream stainless steel industry. Data show that from 2008 to 2018, the proportion of stainless steel in nickel consumption has been rising, which is in an explosive growth state. However, since the reflux of Indonesian stainless steel hit the domestic market and the consumption of waste stainless steel increased, nickel consumption of stainless steel has declined since last year. In addition, the recent rising proportion of new energy battery consumption has a certain impact on the consumption of stainless steel nickel, but from the overall consumption proportion, stainless steel is still a big head, and the relationship between stainless steel and nickel is still very close.
But nickel for stainless steel is not pure nickel, but relatively cheap nickel-iron. Ferric nickel is produced from laterite nickel ore. As China is a scarce country of laterite nickel ore, a large number of imports are needed to meet the needs of high-productivity stainless steel smelting. The main source countries of laterite nickel imports are Indonesia and the Philippines. Since Indonesia imposed export restrictions and quota system in 2014, China’s imports mainly come from the Philippines. In addition, our country is also building factories and smelting production in Indonesia. The representative enterprises are Castle Peak, Delong, Emerging Pipe Casting, etc.
But ferronickel is not scarce, and even stainless steel futures will play a role in holding down spot prices after listing. Large steel mills in the northern region said that the recent sharp rise in nickel prices, stainless steel raw materials are not very tight, stainless steel production mainly uses nickel alloys, such as ferronickel, pure nickel consumption is not large, this wave of sharp rise in nickel prices, should not be mainly caused by stainless steel, but by other costs. Large steel mills in southern China also indicated that there was no shortage of raw materials at present.
From this point of view, although stainless steel and pure nickel belong to nickel consumption, in essence they have separated, each has a complete industrial system, there will be a certain correlation with each other, but it is by no means a follow-up relationship.
Price is supported by cost
At present, the main factors affecting the price of stainless steel are the raw material end and the demand end. As the raw material end of stainless steel, ferronickel and nickel plate are mainly supplied by the Philippines under Indonesia’s ban policy. Overlapping the rumors of depletion of some mines in the Philippines, the market is worried about supply. The price of nickel-based raw materials soars, which leads to the rise of stainless steel. In the long run, due to the expansion of overseas production capacity of ferronickel, the supply situation of 2022 is expected to be tightened. Another factor affecting the price of stainless steel is demand. Although the demand for stainless steel has been increasing in recent years, the growth rate has been declining. Under the effect of high scheduling in steel mills, the accumulation of stainless steel at historic high levels, mainly 300 series stainless steel accounts for most of the inventory. If the demand for stainless steel has not improved, its price is only due to the fluctuation of nickel series, and is weaker than Shanghai nickel, it is difficult to improve.
From the actual data, the overall domestic output is still expected to increase. Price pressures on stainless steel have been highlighted for some time before due to poor trading. However, with the continuous stirring of Indonesian banning news, upstream nickel prices fluctuated abnormally, boosting stainless steel prices. Due to the continuous expansion of nickel price rise, the terminal stainless steel market is more willing to increase, and the atmosphere is also preferred. At the same time, with the arrival of gold, silver and ten in the traditional peak season, the market mostly holds optimistic expectations.
(3) Stainless Steel Stock Distribution Center
Wuxi and Foshan are the main distribution centers of stainless steel in China. Wuxi has Oriental Steel City, Foshan has three large stainless steel trading markets: Foshan Lanshi International Metal Trade Center, Liyuan Logistics City and Jinlin International.

  • 1) Wuxi Oriental Steel City: Founded in 2004, it is the largest stainless steel headquarters in the Yangtze River Delta, with the most advanced planning and complete functions, and occupies 80% of the circulation of stainless steel in the Wuxi market.
  • 2) Lanshi International Metal Exchange Market: It is the core landmark of Foshan stainless steel trade with superior geographical position. Transportation logistics radiates Foshan, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Hong Kong and adjacent provinces and municipalities.
  • 3) Liyuan Logistics City, Jinlin International: The geographical position is superior, the transportation logistics radiates Foshan, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Hong Kong and adjacent provinces and cities.

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Figure 4 Stainless steel inventory structure in Wuxi area

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Figure 5 Stainless steel inventory structure in Foshan area

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Fig. 6 Stainless steel inventory in Wuxi and Foshan

The stock in Wuxi area is mainly 300 series, followed by 400 series, accounting for only 8.48% of the total.
The inventory of Foshan area is mainly 200 series, followed by 300 series, and 400 series accounts for the smallest proportion.
From the total inventory, the inventory in Wuxi is larger than that in Foshan.
From the stock fluctuation, the stainless steel stocks in Wuxi area are relatively stable than those in Foshan.
In addition, the other major stainless steel inventory distribution sites in the country are shown in Table 2.

City Name of Inventory Distribution Site Situation of distribution centres
Taizhou Dainan Stainless Steel Market At present, both finished products and waste materials are made, while there are also some customers of tungsten, molybdenum and nickel plates.
Zibo Longma Stainless Steel Market It is the largest stainless steel market in northern China. It radiates to Shandong, Henan, Hebei, Tianjin, Northeast and other provinces, cities and regions, second only to Wuxi and Foshan, and the largest stainless steel product distribution center in Jiangbei, China.
Tianjin North Stainless Steel Market It is a large-scale stainless steel trading market in the radiation northern region.
Wuhan Jiren Stainless Steel Market Centralizing the largest processing and sales customer base in central China, we can provide one-stop service for the production, sale and processing of stainless steel for industrial and commercial decoration.
Hangzhou New Century Metal Material Market Founded by Hangzhou Steel Group, it relies on the advantages of Hangzhou Steel and becomes the largest metal trading market in Zhejiang Province.
Shanghai Baoxiang Stainless Steel Market It is the main stainless steel coil trading market in Shanghai.
Chengdu Major stainless steel market At present, it is the largest stainless steel market in Chengdu.
Wenzhou Longwan Zhengzhai Stainless Steel Market It is the largest stainless steel market in Wenzhou at present.

Carding of stainless steel industry

Generally speaking, the stainless steel industry chain can be divided into three parts: upper, middle and lower reaches. The upper reaches mainly collect raw materials such as iron ore, nickel ore, chromium ore, manganese ore and carry out preliminary treatment and refining of raw materials. The middle reaches mainly produce stainless steel primary products such as stainless steel sheets and pipes and stainless steel raw materials. The downstream of stainless steel is mainly made into various final products.

(一) Upstream introduction of stainless steel industry chain
The upstream of stainless steel industry chain mainly collects raw materials such as iron ore, nickel ore, chromium ore and manganese ore, and carries out preliminary treatment and refining of raw materials. The main elements of stainless steel are manganese, nickel, chromium and iron. There are some differences in the proportion of elements between different kinds of stainless steel. In this section, we will sort out upstream industry of stainless steel according to different metal elements. 。
(1) Manganese ore
Manganese is widely distributed in nature. There are 150 known manganese minerals, among which Pyrolusite and pyrolusite are the most important and economic ones. Manganese is an important component of 200 series stainless steel, which generally accounts for about 5.5% – 12%. However, it does not account for a high proportion in the 300 and 400 series.
(2) Chromium ore
The addition of chromium is the cause of corrosion resistance of stainless steel. Chromium ore is often processed into ferrochromium. More than 90% of chromium ore is used in the production of stainless steel, which can greatly enhance the hardness and corrosion resistance of stainless steel. No matter in 200 series, 300 series or 400 series, the added proportion is very high, accounting for 10.5% – 20%, 15% – 25% and 10.5% respectively, and the chromium content in 300 series is the highest.
In metallurgical industry, chromite is mainly chromite, while chromite is mainly used to produce ferrochromium alloy and metal chromium. As an additive of steel, ferrochromium alloy produces a variety of special steels with high strength, corrosion resistance, wear resistance, high temperature resistance and oxidation resistance. Chromite is a shortage of minerals with low reserves and low output. In industry, chromium iron, chromium spinel, chromium-rich spinel, hard chromium spinel and other similar minerals are commonly referred to as chromite.
China’s domestic chromium resources are scarce, which is a shortage of resources. The total reserves of ore are 1.78 million tons. The ore-producing areas are distributed in 13 provinces, including Tibet, Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia and Gansu, with Tibet as the main one.
China’s chromium resources are largely dependent on imports. The total amount of chromite resources in the world exceeds 12 billion tons, which should be distributed in South Africa, Kazakhstan, Zimbabwe, Finland and other countries. South Africa and Zimbabwe are the main importers of chromium ores in China. Zimbabwe has a large amount of resources, but its development level is low now. In 2017, China imported 13.86 million tons of chromium ore.
Because of the high reduction temperature of chromium, most enterprises adopt ORE-HEATING furnace to smelt high carbon ferrochromium alloy. The production methods of high carbon ferrochromium include electric furnace method, shaft furnace (blast furnace) method, plasma method and smelting reduction method, among which electric furnace method is dominant.
Continuous operation process of chromium smelting by electric furnace: raw materials are proportioned in the order of coke, silica and chromium ore, and the mixture is even. The open hearth furnace adds the material to the electrodes through the feeding trough, and the material surface is a large cone. The closed furnace directly adds material to the furnace by the feeding pipe. Whether in open or closed furnaces, new materials should be added in time with the sinking of furnace burden in order to maintain a certain material level.
(3) Nickel ore
Nickel is the most important component of stainless steel 300 series. Among the 300 series stainless steel, the cost of nickel accounts for 70%, so the fluctuation of nickel price will have a significant impact on its production cost. At the same time, the 300 series is the largest series of stainless steel in China. Therefore, the demand for nickel in stainless steel industry in China is very large. As China is a typical “nickel scarce” country, nickel is strict. Relying heavily on overseas imports such as Indonesia, the Philippines and other countries.
The production process of nickel is also divided into two parts, the beneficiation of nickel ore and the related smelting of nickel. There are three main nickel related smelting methods: hydrometallurgical nickel, pyrometallurgical nickel and converter ferronickel.
(4) Iron ore
Iron is also an important component of stainless steel, and it occupies an important proportion in 200, 300 and 400 series. Iron is an indispensable metal in the industrial sector, which is widely distributed in life. It is called one of the “ferrous metals”. The main iron ores are hematite, magnetite, siderite and so on.
Because Russia and India, which are relatively rich in minerals, are limited by national policies, most of their output is for domestic demand; China’s iron ore reserves are high, but the grade is low, and the mining cost is high, so domestic demand has not yet been met. In terms of iron ore production, Australia and Brazil have become major suppliers of iron ore, with four major mines controlling more than 70% of the iron ore shipping market. Therefore, the global iron ore mainly comes from Australia and Brazil, and the Australian and Brazilian iron ore mainly comes from the four major mines.
China’s iron ore resources are abundant but not rich, mainly in medium and low grade ores. The reserves of rich ore resources account for only 1.8%, while the reserves of poor ore account for 47.6%. There are more small and medium-sized mines, fewer large mines and fewer super-large mines. The types of ores are complex, and refractory ores and multi-component co-generation ores account for a large proportion. According to the Report on the Investigation of China’s Import Situation and Trend Analysis of Development in 2016, the provinces with large iron ore reserves in China include Liaoning, Sichuan, Hebei and Inner Mongolia. From the data point of view, China’s iron ore is widely distributed and it is difficult to concentrate on development. There are seven major large iron ore mining areas in China, which are distributed in many regions of the country.
(二) Midstream introduction of stainless steel industry chain
The middle reaches of the stainless steel industry chain are mainly the smelting of ores obtained from upstream mining and the further mixing, processing and calendering of ores. Finally, the intermediate products of stainless steel are formed, including coil, profile, pipe, pipe fittings and strip.
1. Introduction to Main Classifications of Stainless Steel Midstream
1) Plate coil
It is divided into hot rolling and cold rolling. Hot rolled coil plate is made of slab (mainly continuous casting slab) as raw material, which is heated and made into strip by roughing mill and finishing mill. According to the different needs of users, the products of steel plate, flat coil and longitudinal cut steel strip can be processed through different finishing lines.
Cold rolling is a kind of steel plate which is further rolled to the target thickness below the recrystallization temperature at room temperature. Compared with hot-rolled steel sheet, cold-rolled steel sheet is more precise in thickness, smooth and beautiful in surface.
2) Profiles
Profiles are objects with certain geometric shapes made of iron or steel and materials with certain strength and toughness by rolling, extrusion, casting and other processes. This kind of material has a certain appearance size, a certain shape of cross-section, and has certain mechanical and physical properties. Profiles can be used alone or further processed into other manufactured products, often used in building structures and manufacturing and installation.
3) Pipes
Pipe is a kind of long steel with hollow section and no joint around it. Steel pipe has hollow section, which is widely used as pipeline for conveying fluids, such as oil, natural gas, gas, water and some solid materials. Compared with solid steels such as round steel, steel pipe has lighter weight when its bending and torsion strength is the same. It is an economic section steel. It is widely used in manufacturing structural and mechanical parts, such as oil drill pipe, automobile transmission shaft, bicycle frame and steel scaffolding used in construction.
4) Strip
Strip metal supplied in rolls with a large aspect ratio. Width greater than 600 mm is called broadband material, and tape less than 600 mm is called narrow strip material. The thickness of the strip can be as thin as 0.001 mm. The strip is produced by hot rolling or cold rolling. The strip can be regarded as a steel with a width less than that of the sheet. Its shape characteristics, production methods and uses are basically the same as those of the sheet.

5) Pipe fittings

Pipe fittings are used to connect pipes. There are different varieties of pipe fittings made of various materials and available in various shapes and sizes. Pipe adapters, couplings, elbows, tees, sleeves, flanges, bulkhead fittings, reducers, valves etc. are all different types of pipe fittings.

Pipe Fittings Types & Their Functions

1. Elbows: Such pipe fittings are used to change the direction of the flow. elbows - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketThey are majorly available in two standard types – 90 and 45 degree angles owing to their high demand in plumbing. The 90 degree elbow is primarily used to connect hoses to water pumps, valves, and deck drains, while the 45 degree elbow is mostly used in water supply facilities, electronic and chemical industrial pipeline networks, food, air-conditioning pipelines, garden production, agriculture, and solar-energy facility.

Available in: Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS plastic), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), chrome-plated brass, chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC), stainless steel, malleable (galvanized and black), and copper.

2. Couplings: A coupling is a pipe fitting used to stop leakages couplings - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketin broken or damaged pipes. The pipes to be connected should be of the same diameter. The two kinds of couplings used in plumbing are regular coupling and slip coupling. The regular coupling is arranged between the two pipes to prevent further leakages with the help of rubber seals or gaskets on the both sides. The slip coupling itself contains two pipes to repair the damaged lengthy pipes.

Available in: ABS, brass, copper, chrome-plated brass, CPVC, PVC, malleable (galvanized and black), and stainless steel.

3. Union: This type of pipe fitting is almost similar union - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketto coupling in terms of functions, but just with a difference, i.e. a union can be removed easily any time while the coupling cannot. A variety of dielectric unions are used to join pipes made of different materials to avoid any kind of galvanic corrosion between them. These pipe fittings comprise of a nut, female and male ended threads.

Available in: Brass, copper, chrome-plated brass, malleable (galvanized and black), PVC, CPVC, and stainless steel.

4. Adapters: Adapters are connected to pipes to either increase theiradapters - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketlengths or if pipes do not have appropriate ends. These pipe fittings make the ends of the pipe either male or female threaded as per the need. This permits unlike pipes to be connected without any need of extensive setup. They are mostly used for PVC and copper pipes.

Available in: ABS, CPVC, copper, malleable (galvanized and black), PVC, brass, and stainless steel.

5. Nipple: This is a short butt of a pipe that works as a connectionnipple - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market between two other fittings having male threads. A close nipple is a type of pipe fitting having continuous threading on them. They are mostly used in hoses and plumbing.

Available in: Brass, chrome-plated brass, malleable (galvanized and black), PVC, copper, and stainless steel.

6. ReducerThis pipe setting is used to reduce the flow size of the pipe from the bigger to smaller one. There are two kinds of reducers- concentric reducer and eccentric reducer. reducer - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketThe former one is in the shape of a cone used for gradual reducing of the size of the pipe. The latter one has its one edge facing the mouth of theconnecting pipe reducing the chances of air accumulation.

7. Tee: This T-shaped pipe fitting used in the plumbingtee - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market system has one inlet and two outlets arranged at an angle of 90 degrees to the main pipe. This kind of fitting is used to connect the two pipes and make their flow direction as one. If all the three sides of this fitting are same in size, it is called equal tee, otherwise unequal tee.

Available in: ABS, copper, CPVC, PVC, brass, chrome-plated brass, malleable (galvanized and black), and stainless steel.

8. Cross: This type of pipe fitting containscross - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market four openings in all thefour major directions. This fitting is adjoined to four pipes meeting at common point. There is either one inlet and three outlets or vice-versa to flow water or any other liquid in four different directions. These kinds of pipe fittings are commonly used in fire sprinkler systems.

Available in: PVC, brass, malleable (galvanized and black), and stainless steel.

9. Flanges: A flange is another pipe fitting used to connect pipes,flanges - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market pumps, valves, and other components to form a full-fledged piping system. They come with a flexibility of easily cleaning or inspecting the whole system from within. They are fixed to the pipes using welding, threading or screwing techniques and then finally sealed with the help of bolts. They are used in residential pump systems and majorly for industrial purposes.

Available in: Brass, copper, malleable (galvanized and black), and PVC.

10. Caps & Plugs: Both these pipe fittings are used to close the endscaps plugs - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market of the pipe either temporarily or permanently. The plugs are fitted inside the pipe and threaded to keep the pipe for future use. There are a good number of ways a cap can be applied to the pipe like soldering, glue, or threading depending on the material of the pipe.

Available in: ABS, brass, copper, chrome-plated brass, malleable (galvanized and black), CPVC, PVC, and stainless steel.

11. Bushings: These pipe fittings are used to combine pipes of differentbushings - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketsizes together by decreasing the size of the larger fitting to the size of the smaller pipe. Bushings are not always threaded inside out and occupy very little space in comparison to a union or coupling used for the same purpose.

Available in: ABS, chrome-plated brass, copper, brass, CPVC, PVC, stainless steel, and malleable (galvanized and black).

12. Wyes: Such type of pipe fittings are used in drainage systems and havewyes - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market a branch line at 45 degrees to keep the flow of water smooth. When the sanitary tees fail to work in a horizontal connection, such cases needs a wye.

Available in: Brass, ABS, and PVC.

13. Valves: Valves are used in the plumbing system to stop valves - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketthe flow of gases or liquids. There are of three types – throttling, isolation, and non-return. The isolation valves are used to disconnect a part of the piping system temporarily for maintenance or repair. The throttling valves are used to regulate the amount of pressure of a liquid in a pipe; they can also withstand the stress caused by this process.

14. Barb:barb - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel market A barb is another useful pipe fitting used in the plumbing system that connects flexible tubing to pipes. It has a male-threaded end on one side that connects with the female threads, and the other end has a single or a multi-barbed tube that is inserted in the flexible tubing.

Available in: Brass for hot water uses and plastic for cold water.

15. Diverter tee: diverter tee - Teach you to know the Chinese stainless steel marketThis kind of a tee-shaped pipe fitting is commonly used in the pressurized hydronic heating systems to redirect a part of the flow from the main line to the side branch connected to a heat exchanger.

16. Olet: These fittings are used when the standard size of the fittings fails to serve the purpose. How are pipe fittings connected to pipes?
Pipe fittings are either male fittings or female fittings. In threaded pipe fittings, female threads are on the inside while male threads are on the outside. Pipe fittings that have one female end and one male end are called street fittings. Pipe fittings are used to connect pipes or tubes in two ways:

  • By threading: Threaded pipes screw together to connect or join. Generally metal pipes are threaded and they have threaded fittings.
  • By slip fit: Slip fit pipes use sleeves that slip into one another. The plastic pipes are either threaded or slip fit.

Accordingly pipe fittings are organized as follows:

  • Male threaded: Exterior threads. Are screwed into the inside of pipe end of a larger diameter with internal threading.
  • Female threaded: Interior threads. Receive male threaded pipe fittings.
  • Male slip fit: There are no threads. Receive a narrower.
  • Female slip fit: Female slip fit: There are no threads. Made to slip into slightly larger male sleeve.

Purpose of a pipe fitting:

The basic purposes of any pipe fitting are as follows:

  • Connecting the bores of two or more pipes or tubes.
  • Connecting pipe sections.
  • Connecting a pipe to a different apparatus.
  • Changing the direction of fluid/liquid flow.
  • Maintaining or regulating the flow.
  • Closing and sealing a pipe.

Selection criteria for pipe fittings:

Pipe fittings are to be chosen considering certain factors. They are as follows:

  • Connection types: When purchasing pipe fittings, you should be aware of the fact that a fitting can have two different connector types. One end of the fitting might be female threaded while the other female threaded. One end might be male slip while the other end is threaded, in the case of plastic fittings. They can also have matching ends which can accommodate any requirement.
  • Materials of construction: As a rule, the pipe fitting should be of the same material as the material used in the making of the pipe in which it is to be fitted. However, in some cases, materials conforming to certain codes or standards can also be used in pipes of another material.
  • Check for flow: To keep the flow consistent, the ends of pipe fittings should be slightly larger than the rest of the pipe so that they can accommodate connections without narrowing the inner diameter (ID) of the pipe.
  • Type of fitting: Besides pipe materials, pipe fittings are identified by the type of fitting — threaded or slip, male or female.
  • Size: When measuring the size of pipe fittings, it is to be noted that the male threaded fittings are measured to the outside edge or OD, while female fittings are measured to the inside edge of the inlet or ID.
  • Thickness: Just as pipes are available in a number of different thicknesses or “schedules”, so also the pipe fittings.
  • Design: Each pipe or tube is designed to carry certain specific types of fluids, liquids, gases, chemicals under varying conditions. Accordingly, the pipe fittings are also available in variety of designs.
  • Standards and codes: There are certain standards and codes set by various organizations by which the different pipe fittings are graded. For example, ASTM, ASME, BSP etc. are certain standards assigned to pipe fittings and those standards dictate their use.

Pipe Fittings based on Purposes :

Depending on the purposes served, pipe fittings can be categorized as under:

  • Pipe fittings to extend or terminate pipe runs: For example, Couplings, Adapters, Unions , Caps and Plugs Pipe.
  • Fittings to change a pipe’s direction: For example , Elbows
  • Pipe fittings to connect two or more pipes: For example: Tees, Cross, Side-inlet Elbows, Wyes
  • Pipe fittings to change pipe size: For example, Reducers, Bushings, Couplings
  • Pipe fittings to manage or regulate flow: For example, Valves
  • Pipe fitting tools: For example, Pipe fasteners
  • Pipe flanges

2. Production capacity of stainless steel
In recent years, with the increasing consumption of stainless steel in China, the production capacity of stainless steel has also increased. The capacity scale of stainless steel production enterprises in our country varies greatly. Among the stainless steel production enterprises in our country, there are Taigang, Baosteel, Yaang, Zhangpu, Guangzhou Lianzhong and Jiugang which have reached the international advanced equipment level. Qingshan Holding Group is the private enterprise with the highest output, and Taiyuan Stainless Steel is the state-owned enterprise with the largest output. There are also small and medium-sized enterprises that produce backward products with medium-frequency furnace as smelting equipment. Among them, enterprises that adopt backward production technology in Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Guangxi account for a large proportion. These stainless steel enterprises that adopt backward technology and equipment have high energy consumption, poor product quality and serious waste of resources.
(三)  Introduction of Downstream Stainless Steel Industry Chain
The downstream of stainless steel industry refers to the production process in which stainless steel sheets, coils and wires are further processed into our actual daily necessities or production tools. The industries that need stainless steel are mainly in the following areas: construction industry, daily products industry, household appliances industry, machinery industry and automobile industry.
(1) Construction industry
Stainless steel is a very important building material. Firstly, the high toughness and high strength of the frame make it have good tensile properties, especially the high quality stainless steel structure can withstand large loads and span large distances. Therefore, high-strength stainless steel can provide excellent structural support, while allowing the reduction of material thickness, so it has a certain cost advantage; secondly, stainless steel has good corrosion resistance due to the addition of chromium, and is not easy to contact with external materials and chemical reaction; thirdly, stainless steel has a rich variety, which can meet the different standards of different parts of the building. Requirements; Finally, the convenience of stainless steel allows it to be easily transported and installed quickly. At the same time, the use of stainless steel frameworks in buildings can help reduce carbon emissions and stainless steel alloys can be recycled almost 100%, which is environmentally friendly. In summary, stainless steel materials are widely used in the construction industry.
Generally speaking, the corrosion resistance of stainless steel can be ranked from weak to strong in construction industry as 304/304L, 430, 439 < 316/316L, 444 < 317L < 2205, 904L, 317LMN, super duplex steel, super ferritic stainless steel or super austenitic stainless steel containing 6% molybdenum.
(2) Daily products industry
Stainless steel products are widely used in daily products industry. Its corrosion resistance and heat resistance have great advantages in the manufacture of gas cookers, heating equipment, piping and water storage tanks, cabinet products, edible utensils and other daily necessities. China has become the main production base of stainless steel kitchenware in the world, and the output of stainless steel daily products has increased or decreased from 2012 to 2017. In 2017, the national production of stainless steel products for daily use was the highest, with a output of 2.309 million tons. In 2012, it was relatively small, with a production of 1.595 million tons. In 2017, China ranked the output of stainless steel daily products in Guangdong, Zhejiang, Tianjin, Fujian, Jiangsu and Shanghai. Among them, Guangdong ranks first, with the output of stainless steel daily products of 1.8325 million tons in 2017, ranking first in the country.
Stainless steel is mainly used in stainless steel kitchenware and equipment, stainless steel utensils, stainless steel hardware and sanitary ware.
Stainless steel used in kitchen equipment generally requires high surface and mechanical properties of products. The main stainless steel varieties are 304, 430, 201 and 202. China’s kitchen products enterprises are mainly distributed in Guangdong, Zhejiang and other regions. The kitchen products enterprises in Guangdong Province are mainly located in Shunde, Jiangmen, Jieyang and Chaozhou Caitang. The kitchenware industry cluster of Shengzhou City in Zhejiang Province has been formed, which has a large industrial scale and occupies an important position in the national kitchenware industry, while the production of stainless steel sinks in Shunde and Jiangmen of Foshan City is relatively concentrated; besides, Boxing and Yunfu Xinxing Counties in Shandong Province are the famous home of stainless steel kitchenware in China, and also the production and export base of kitchenware.
The stainless steel varieties commonly used in the utensils industry are similar to kitchen products. They are 201, 202, 304, 430 plus 410. More than 70% of stainless steel utensils require standard sizes of 0.3*800mm. Stainless steel bowls are mainly made of plates and strips with thickness specifications of 0.5-1.0*800mm, while plates and strips with thickness specifications of less than 0.4 mm are used to make export plates and cup utensils. Domestic utensils enterprises mainly distribute in the South and East China, mainly in Guangdong, Zhejiang and Shanghai.
The main stainless steel models in the hardware industry are 304, 430, 201, 410, 420, etc. The thickness of stainless steel is widely used. Domestic stainless steel hardware enterprises are mainly distributed in Guangdong and Jiangsu and Zhejiang regions, while enterprises in other regions are scattered. The demand for stainless steel in hardware industry in Guangdong is mainly concentrated in Foshan and Yangjiang. Generally speaking, the hardware industry needs less 300 series stainless steel, mostly 400 and 200 series stainless steel.
(3) Household Appliances Industry
Household appliances industry is a potential big market for stainless steel coil application, mostly using 400 series stainless steel. The safety and economy of stainless steel in humid and high temperature environment are very important in household appliances manufacturing. The application of stainless steel in household appliances and electronics industry can be divided into two parts: large appliances and small appliances.
Among the four major household appliances, air conditioning, television, refrigerator and washing machine, washing machine is the most stainless steel product used in household appliances. The inner cylinder material requires high corrosion resistance. Refrigerator doors require magnetic materials and beautiful appearance. Most of 430 cold-rolled stainless steel plates with material selection ranging from 0.6 mm to 0.8 mm are cold-rolled. Refrigerators use cold-rolled plates with thickness ranging from 0.4 mm to 0.6 mm; linings with more welding connections are mostly made of Austrian stainless steel such as 304. Refrigerators, air conditioners, television and other household appliances in China have become very competitive export products. The production and marketing of the four major household appliances and the demand for stainless steel raw materials have maintained growth in recent years, but the growth rate has shrunk.
For small household appliances, microwave ovens, water heaters, rice cookers and dishwashers are all made of stainless steel. The water heater requires stainless steel to be used in both the inner liner and the outer shell of the wave oven. There is no complicated deformation processing for inner liner and outer shell of microwave oven. Generally, 430 stainless steel cold-rolled plates with thickness of 0.4-0.5 mm are selected as main materials. Considering the requirement of large deformation and easy cleaning, 304 austenitic stainless steel is mostly used in dishwasher.
China is the largest home appliances manufacturing base in the world. Home appliances can not only meet the different needs of the domestic market, but also be exported to many countries and regions overseas. The global output of air conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines and other home appliances in China has been in the forefront in the world. The renewal of these household appliances has also led to the increase of stainless steel consumption.
(4) Machinery industry
The application of stainless steel in machinery industry mainly includes three parts: transportation equipment, oxygen production and oxygen transmission equipment, power generation equipment and food, pharmaceutical machinery and equipment industry.
For transportation equipment, cold rolled stainless steel sheets are mainly consumed, and the thickness of sheets is generally 0.4-3.0 mm.
The series used are 304, 310S, 316/316L and other 300 series, which are used for train, ship pipeline, kitchen and sanitary equipment, carriage, partial warehouse board, ladder pedal, handrails, interior decorations, etc.
For oxygen-making and oxygen-transporting equipment and power generation equipment, the main demand of users is seamless steel pipe, which is used for oxygen-making, oxygen-transporting and power-generating equipment pipelines. The main types of stainless steel used are HR3C, 310SNBN, Super 304, 347H, etc.
For the food and pharmaceutical machinery and equipment industry, users mainly need 304, 316, 316L, 321 stainless steel seamless pipes and firmware, as well as round steel, sheet, profiles and so on. They are mainly used for various cans, kettles, pipelines and shafts of machinery and equipment in the food and pharmaceutical industry. The thickness of stainless steel sheets is generally 0.4-1.5mm.
In recent years, the output growth rate of various large-scale machinery has been differentiated and fluctuated greatly in recent years. Overall, after 2014, the growth rate of construction machinery industry has slowed down significantly, and has rebounded since 2017. It is expected that the overall demand for steel in the machinery industry will increase slightly.
(5) Automobile industry
The application of stainless steel in automotive industry can be roughly classified into five categories: automotive exhaust system, automotive fuel tank, automotive frame, automotive parts and automotive decoration.
Stainless steel for automotive fuel tank is mainly stainless steel plate, which requires excellent stamping formability, welding performance and high corrosion resistance. 300 series stainless steel, such as SUS304L, is widely used.
The automobile frame is made of stainless steel, which is the high strength stainless steel plate for automobile, such as the integral body shell made of ferritic stainless steel. Its service life is generally 15-20 years.
Stainless steel is also widely used in automotive parts, especially 300 series stainless steel, such as stainless steel sealing rings, stainless steel plate heat exchangers, and the materials mostly use SUS304, SUS430 and SUS409L; stainless steel fasteners are used in automotive engine system and transmission system, and the materials mostly use SUS410, SUS304, SUS316, SUS430JIL, SUH660, etc.
Automobile decoration also has the use of stainless steel, such as stainless steel inserts, antennas, wheel covers or large passenger car handrails, safety railings, hangers and so on.
With the continuous improvement of China’s economic development level and people’s increasing demand for quality of life, as the world’s largest automobile consumer market, the popularity of automobiles in China is getting higher and higher. At the same time, due to the continuous improvement of requirements for stainless steel varieties in automobile manufacturing industry, stainless steel in the automotive field is expected to maintain growth in the future.

Prospects for the Future of Stainless Steel

In the first half of 2018, the overall domestic stainless steel consumption has exceeded expectations. It is expected that the domestic apparent consumption will increase by more than 10% year on year over the same period. In addition to the steady growth of stainless steel consumption in traditional daily-use products, construction, machinery, household appliances, electronics, automobiles and other applications, it will benefit from the upgrading of manufacturing industry, consumption upgrading and the continuous development of new areas of stainless steel application in the future. For example, domestic high-end stainless steel products have emerged in the fields of nuclear power and military industry, and the product structure of stainless steel is expected to upgrade again. The volume is expected to increase further.
According to product classification, 200 series stainless steel has serious domestic counterfeit and inferior problems, which lead to a series of environmental problems. In recent years, the clearing of “floor steel” and the normal development of environmental protection high pressure in China have promoted the gradual withdrawal of production capacity with irregular and poor environmental protection foundation. The main product of inferior stainless steel is “200 series”. With more and more attention paid to the concept of environmental protection in China, the problem of recycling 200 series scrap steel will become more and more difficult, and in the foreseeable future 200 series stainless steel will decline to a certain extent; 300 series stainless steel has always been the mainstream product of stainless steel, especially 304 universal series is the most widely used stainless steel model, the output of 300 series will remain a larger share in the short term; because 400 series stainless steel production The product has low nickel content, which can save a lot of nickel resources and further reduce the high external dependence of nickel in our country. At the same time, it also significantly reduces the cost of raw material production of stainless steel and enhances the voice on the price of stainless steel. At present, the domestic market 400 series of main smelting units: Taigang, Baosteel, Jiuquan Steel, Lianzhong, Taishan Iron and Steel, Fuxinte Steel 6 units. Because 400 series requires high technology, only state-owned large steel can be produced at present. In the future, major steel plants are positively laying out 400 series stainless steel. It is believed that in the near future, 400 series will gradually replace 200 series, and the proportion of 400 series will increase considerably.
With the transformation and upgrading of China’s industrial structure, the application of high-end stainless steel has been expanding. According to the published “Regulation and Upgrading Plan for Iron and Steel Industry (2016-2020)”, the state will focus on supporting the R&amp;D and industrialization of high-end steel products required for major technical equipment in the fields of high-tech ships, marine engineering equipment, nuclear power, advanced rail transit, electric power, aerospace, machinery and other fields, and continuously increasing effective supply. The structure of stainless steel products in China has also begun to develop from low-end, ordinary to high-end. In 2017, the output of duplex stainless steel in China exceeded 100,000 tons for the first time, and reached 160,000 tons in 2018. In the first quarter of 2019, the output of duplex stainless steel increased by 108.59% compared with the same period last year, while the total output of stainless steel declined. Urban infrastructure and beautiful countryside construction promote the application of stainless steel. The demand for stainless steel by new urban population is increasing. Construction structure, water supply system, household appliances and other industries have become potential consumption areas of stainless steel.
The growth point of stainless steel demand in the future may be mainly in the following aspects:
(1) Architectural field
At present, the proportion of stainless steel in curtain wall industry is only about 12%. In recent years, architects prefer stainless steel curtain wall design more and more widely. It is expected that the percentage of stainless steel used in curtain wall will reach 20-30% in the next 3-5 years. At present, the trend of building development requires high durability and environmental protection of materials. It is the general trend to choose stainless steel as building decoration materials.
(2) Construction of Urban Underground Pipe Gallery
Stainless steel is the best material for water industry, such as water preparation, storage, transportation, purification, regeneration and desalination. Its advantages are corrosion resistance, earthquake resistance, water saving, sanitation, light weight, less maintenance, long service life and low life cycle cost. It can be recycled as a green environmental protection material. Stainless steel pipes can effectively reduce the leakage rate of urban water supply, prevent secondary pollution, improve and ensure water quality.
(3) Demand for upgrading of industry and manufacturing
With the continuous development of industrial modernization and high-end manufacturing industry, the requirements for stainless steel and corrosion-resistant alloy materials are also increasing. It mainly includes high-temperature heat-resistant materials for high-parameter ultra-supercritical power generation, high-temperature corrosion-resistant materials for nuclear power evaporator, seawater desalination, high-end corrosion-resistant materials for petrochemical industry and so on.

Source: Network Arrangement – China piping solution supplier:



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