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Latin American Steel Industry

 Latin America Steel: A retrospective in 101 essays
Author: Germano Mendes de Paula
(Institute of Economics, Federal University of Uberlândia)
Editor: Quartz Business Media

This book contains the first 101 articles published in Steel Times International (STI), during the period 2000-2011. During these twelve years, the intention was to present a contemporary view of some aspect of the Latin American steel industry at that time. The essays are reproduced here in the same sequence and format that they were originally published.

The articles are divided into two categories: a) ‘Updates’ – a regular column in which the author provides his viewpoint about a particular issue. There are a total of 82 such essays. b) ‘Conference reports’ of various meetings addressing matters of interest to Latin American steelmakers – these containing reviews and summarise reflecting the ideas of various presenters. There 19 such pieces.

Regarding the geographical distribution of the ‘Updates’ alone, 10.1% analysed the Latin American steel industry as a whole. Bearing in mind that a given article can pay attention to more than one country, Brazil was included in the theme of 38.2% of the ‘Updates’, which is understandable considering that the country was responsible for more than half of Latin American crude steel production over the past decade – ranging from a 51.5% share in 2001 to 53.3% in 2010. Of the frequency of reference to other countries, Mexico (15.7%), Argentina (10.1%) and Venezuela (9.0%) have also received significant attention. Other articles cover Chile and Colombia (4.5% each), Peru (3.4%), Central America, Bolivia, Ecuador, Trinidad y Tobago (1.1% each). Although every effort was made to diversify the nations analysed, Cuba, Paraguay and Uruguay – which together produce just 0.6% of the region’s steel –, were seldom referenced.

Concerning the themes, any analysis is more complex, because any one essay can debate several topics. Based on the most important questions raised in the ‘Updates’, 51 referred to the micro-level (company) and, 31 to the macro-level (national/regional data). Indeed, the intense process of mergers & acquisitions, the growing internationalization of production, the various strategic alliances, the increasing importance of vertical integration, investments to enlarge production capacity and/or changing the product mix are key features of the 101 essays.

The book can be purchased at STI’s website: