ArcelorMittal Spain tells Kallanish it has implemented production stoppages at its plants in the Asturias region, Basque Country and Valencia as from 18 March.
The steelmaker took the decision due to the impact the coronavirus is having on many of its customers, mainly those from the automotive sector. They have practically halted their output in recent weeks.
“ArcelorMittal is temporarily stopping one of its two blast furnaces, one of the two sinter plants and the galvanizing line in Asturias,” the company says. The Avilés mill will operate at half capacity, with one converter and one continuous casting machine, ArcelorMittal confirms. The company’s EAF-based Sestao steelworks will be totally closed, while the stoppage at the Sagunto plant involves the galvanizing line.
The company is evaluating a temporary lay-off scheme for part of the workforce. The plan will be negotiated with unions in the coming days, ArcelorMittal adds.
In a separate statement, the steelmaker explains that “…ArcelorMittal will continue to monitor the evolution of the coronavirus in each of the markets it operates and will take decisions accordingly to ensure the health of its workforce and its ability to meet customer demand.”