Acerinox says it has decided to temporarily stop melting at its Spanish mill located near Algeciras. Globally, the company is also stopping new order intake, sale of stocks and purchases of raw materials to assess the volatile market situation.
In a release seen by Kallanish, the company notes that other stainless steel suppliers are doing the same and that Acerinox prefers for the market to normalise or stabilise before fully restarting commercial activities.
“We cannot allow that the jump impacts our purchasing price of nickel and scrap; we also cannot allow that these lift the prices of our final product (they would duplicate), with the risk of breaking the market,” says Acerinox Group chief executive Bernardo Velazquez.
This week, global nickel prices jumped dramatically, forcing the London Metals Exchange to halt nickel trading and bringing turmoil to the entire steel sector. The war in Ukraine is also lifting energy and natural gas prices dramatically in various parts of Europe, including Spain.
Acerinox is discussing with its Spanish trade unions a temporary layoff scheme to be applied for the period of the downturn at the Algeciras plant. A number of other steelmakers in the country stopped melting activities at their electric arc furnaces since the end of last week.
Emanuele Norsa Italy