Russia's third-largest steelmaker Novolipetsk, or NLMK, said on Tuesday its crude steel production was 3.9 million tons in the first quarter of this year, down 3.8 percent from the previous quarter.
This decline was related mainly to the reduction in long products segment output of 7.5 percent quarter-on-quarter due to the mastering of new products, it said in a statement.
But NLMK sales rose by 8.3 percent to 3.86 million tons driven by improved demand and restocking. Sales of rolled steel products, constituting 66 percent of the total sales volume, went up by 11 percent to 2.6 million tons.
Sales to the Russian market rose by 6.1 percent to 1.5 million tons, while exports increased by 9.8 percent to 2.3 million tons.
The company expects its output in the first quarter to change little from the first one due to scheduled maintenance works at its core Novolipetsk plant.