TOKYO, June 19 (Reuters) - Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co Ltd , Japan's top electric-arc furnace steelmaker, said on Monday it will hold its product prices steady for a fifth straight month in July to reflect flat spot prices in the local market.
"We are sticking to the current prices as the domestic market remains at a standstill," Tokyo Steel's managing director Kiyoshi Imamura told a news conference on Monday.
"But we expect the market will gradually strengthen as we are headed for a slow output period in summer and we see an increase in construction demand," he said, pointing to metropolitan redevelopment projects, increased capital spending by companies and shop and hotel projects ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The price of Tokyo Steel's main product, H-shaped beams used in construction, will remain at 78,000 yen ($702.60) a tonne, while prices for steel bars, including rebar, will be 56,000 yen a tonne.
The company's pricing strategy is closely watched by Asian rivals such as South Korea's Posco and Hyundai Steel Co, as well as China's Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd(Baosteel). ($1 = 111.0200 yen) (Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Richard Pullin)