Global steel giant ArcelorMittal Monday said it will temporarily reduce its annualised primary flat steel production in Europe by three million tonne. The company "announces its intention to temporarily idle production at its steel making facilities in Krakow, Poland, and reduce production in Asturias, Spain".
The firm also said in a statement that the planned increase of shipments at ArcelorMittal Italia to a six million tonne annual run-rate will be slowed following a decision to optimise cost and quality over volume in this environment. Together, these actions will result in a temporary annualised production reduction of around three million tonne in Europe, the world's largest steel maker said.
"The difficult decision to temporarily reduce our European primary flat steel production has not been taken lightly. We understand the impact this has on employees and the local communities and will be working to ensure social measures are in place to support them during this period," Geert van Poelvoorde, chief executive officer, ArcelorMittal Europe- flat products, said. These actions reflect the weak demand environment currently in Europe, a situation further compounded by increased imports despite the safeguard measures introduced by the European Commission, he said.
Poelvoorde said high energy costs and increasing carbon costs are adding to the tough environment. "We will also continue to make our case for a green border adjustment to be introduced to ensure that imports into Europe face the same carbon costs as producers in Europe. The steel industry in Europe can have a strong future but there must be a level playing field to ensure that an unfair advantage is not given to competitors outside the region," he said.
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