According to data released by the China Foundry Association, the total output of various types of castings in China in 2018 was 49.35 million tons, which was basically the same as that in 2017 (49.40); the demand structure of castings in the downstream industry changed significantly.
Since 2000, China's casting production has shown a positive growth trend; while, since 2011, it has been transformed from “high-speed growth” to “medium-low-speed growth”. During this period, there was a 1.3% decline in 2015.
From the perspective of changes in the demand structure of castings in the downstream industry, cast pipes and fittings, construction machinery and rail transit have a relatively high positive growth in 2018, reaching 7.2%, 11.9% and 9% respectively; hydraulic parts and pump valves in general machinery also maintained a high positive growth; the demand for castings in the automotive industry declined for the first time in many years, and the demand for castings in industries such as agricultural machinery, power generation equipment and electricity has declined significantly. Thanks to the export of general-purpose machinery and castings such as centrifugal casting pipes, construction machinery, rail transit, pumps and valves, China's casting production in 2018 remained basically the same as in the previous year.
In terms of the output of different materials, the output of gray cast iron was 20.65 million tons, decreased 2.4% compared to the 21.15 million tons in 2017. Due to the dramatical growth of demand for centrifugal cast iron pipe, ductile iron (including compacted graphite iron) increased from 13.75 million tons to 14.15 million tons, an increase of 2.9%; driven by rail transit, mining and metallurgy, and construction machinery, the output of steel castings continued to grow, with a growth rate of 3.6%; affected by the decline in production of automobiles and motorcycles, aluminum (magnesium) alloy castings, for the first time, experienced a negative growth with a drop of 2.1%; malleable cast iron, copper alloys and other castings did not change much.
In 2018, the output of cast steel products kept increasing, accounting for 11.7% (11.3% in 2017, 10.8% in 2016) of the total production; aluminum (magnesium) alloy castings was reduced to 14.5% (14.8% in 2017 and 14.6% in 2016); and the ductile iron castings increased to 28.7% (27.8% in 2017 and 28.0% in 2016).