BEIJING, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- China's crude steel output rose slightly last year, according to the country's top economic planner on Monday.
Crude steel production increased 1.2 percent year on year to 808.37 million tonnes in 2016, compared with a 2.3 percent decrease in 2015, according to the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
Meanwhile, steel prices continued to pick up, with the domestic steel price index gaining 11.23 points from November to reach 99.48 in December on average, increasing 44.13 points from the same period in 2015.
China's over-supplied steel sector has experienced years of plunging prices and factory shutdowns due to a sluggish economy. However, with an upward trend in prices from the beginning of 2016, many steel mills are resuming production.
The central government has reiterated that cutting overcapacity is high on its reform agenda as excess capacity in sectors such as steel and coal has weighed on the country's economic performance.
China plans to reduce steel output by an additional 100 million to 150 million tonnes by 2020. Its 2016 target to cut 45 million tonnes was achieved ahead of schedule.