ArcelorMittal to halt Gijón blast furnace

ArcelorMittal says it will temporarily halt blast furnace A at its Gijón mill in northern Spain at the end September under pressure from rising energy costs, Kallanish learns from the company.

The decision has been taken at a time of economic uncertainty and with weakening levels of confidence among steel consumers in Europe, ArcelorMittal explains.

“The extremely challenging situation of the European steel market, with high levels of imports from non-EU countries and weak demand, have led to the decision to implement this measure in order to protect the profitability and sustainability of our operations in Asturias,” the company says. ArcelorMittal did not disclose any expected production loss or personnel cutbacks.

Meanwhile, major workers’ union CCOO says the BF shutdown is set to last for the full fourth quarter. In a statement, the organisation qualifies the stoppage as “disproportionate and lacking in the slightest justification”. CCOO points out that the last stoppage was agreed at group level in Europe as a reaction to the high price of electricity in Spain, which today is much lower than in the rest of Europe.

Todor Kirkov Bulgaria