Stalprofil foresees continued demand from infrastructure investment

Stalprofil foresees the continuation of investment into Polish gas pipelines, and road and rail infrastructure in 2019, which should help maintain demand and a positive price trend.

As a factor that will benefit its infrastructure segment Stalprofil cites the third investment round by Polish gas pipeline operator Gaz-System, which is scheduled for launch in the second half of 2019. This will cover around 2,000km of insulated pipe.

Stalprofil’s steel product sales rose 3% on-year in 2018 to 218,337 tonnes, while steel structures sales increased 17% to 3,164t. In the infrastructure segment, anti-corrosion pipe coating sales soared 137% to 2.12 million m2 thanks to tenders by Gaz System. Stalprofil participated in these as a consortium partner with subsidiary Izostal.

In 2018 Polish steel consumption rose 9.5% on-year to 14.9 million tonnes, which supported an upward price trend, further boosted by EU trade defence measures, Stalprofil president Jerzy Bernhard says in a report seen by Kallanish.

Revenue increased 30% on-year in 2018 to PLN 1.45 billion ($379.3 million), driven by a 56% surge in the infrastructure segment to PLN 837.86m, while the steel segment rose 7% to PLN 616.9m. Net profit attributable to majority shareholders was up 39% to PLN 28.93m.

Domestic revenue surged 32%, representing 91.6% of 2018 sales, while exports increased 18%, representing 8.4% of sales. This came despite high competition, steel oversupply in the EU and the influx into the EU of cheap steel from the Far East and CIS, Stalprofil says. Exports went mainly to the other Visegrad countries, the Baltic States and Germany. Non-EU European countries, such Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and Norway, represented 11.2% of exports.

ArcelorMittal, meanwhile, supplied 28.9% of Stalprofil’s procurement in 2018, while Corinth Pipeworks represented 13.5%. Gaz-System was Stalprofil’s largest customer, representing 37.6% of sales.