ArcelorMittal has confirmed in statements to Kallanish that its European flat products’ operations will reduce production due to the coronavirus outbreak. Among others, the biggest operations impacted so far are set to be those in Italy and France.
“Given the extent of the outbreak, and particularly the impact it is having on several European countries in which ArcelorMittal operates, as an initial response the company intends to reduce production from its European Flat Products operations. We will continue to monitor the evolution of the coronavirus and its implications for steel demand in each of our operating markets,” the company says.
The halting of a number of ArcelorMittal production units has already been implemented in Italy this week, including the temporary idling of a blast furnace, but the situation is in constant evolution.
In France the company is confirming output reductions due to the fall in demand, with the exception of that linked with the packaging industry. In the south of the country the company will halt a blast furnace and a steelmaking unit for a period of seven days. Some rolling mills in Fos-sur-Mer will also be halted, starting from this week.
In Dunkirk, in the north of France, one blast furnace will also be halted from next week, while finishing lines will reduce output there and also in Florange.
In Spain the local unions at the company’s integrated sites in the north of the country have requested that the steelmaker considers output reductions or stoppages to protect workers. In Sagunto some rolling lines are already planning to stop production due to the expected fall in automotive demand.