Beijing's blue sky conundrum

China’s steel industry rumour mill has been in overdrive the past few days, amid talk that Beijing is ordering steelmakers from surrounding regions to cut production ahead of a key event in the capital.

What we’ve heard so far:
Last week, the market was buzzing with chatter that Beijing had ordered a stop on all construction activity in the capital ahead of a military parade – which marks the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II – on September 3.
The rumour could not be confirmed, but since the weekend, the talk from local media and market participants is that the clean air policy has now been extended to steel mills in neighboring areas, and that these will be required to stop or limit production in the period leading up to the spectacle.
Mills located within 100 km around the capital are required to halt all production activities; those within 100-200 km have to cut their output by 50%. Steelmakers located between 200 and 500 km away need to reduce production by one third.

Air pollution has been a major topic in China...


Veronica Qin

July 29, 2015

10:42 GMT